“Mary Wollstonecraft rocks” – more on raising feminists

Those of you who know me IRL, and those of you have been reading my blog for a while will perhaps be aware that my daughters are the most intelligent, likable, delightful, caring, beautiful girls in the world. I am outrageously proud of them.

I’m sure I will write about each of them on occasion, but today I am feeling particularly outrageously proud of my elder daughter, Miss Ten. As part of her school homework, she is required to read aloud to me for 5 minutes, once a week. Last week, she found some political theory notes I had written for a course I delivered a few years ago, and she read the section on Plato’s theory of the forms (it’s useful to know about them when you are reading The Republic). So she decided would read it out loud to me. But I directed her to another section of the notes, about Mary Wollstonecraft. Hard going, for a ten year old. But she’s a bright kid, and there’s good reason to stretch her, and even better reason to start to introduce her to some of the great women who have come before us, and made the world a better place for us.

Miss Ten read the section competently, and then turned to me and said, “Mary Wollstonecraft rocks!”

Well yes, dear, she does, I thought. We talked a little more about her, and then she started heading off to bed. As I was helping her to straighten her room (a nightly task because she really does prefer to store things on the floor), Miss Ten said, “You know, she [Wollstonecraft] was even more amazing because it must have been much harder to be feminist back then.”

I’ve taught university students who have been incapable of assessing a person in the context of their own times.

Miss Ten says she wants to be a feminist when she grows up. I think she’s one already.

[/proud mother rant over]


10 responses to ““Mary Wollstonecraft rocks” – more on raising feminists

  1. Awesome kid blogging 🙂

  2. [/proud mother rant over]


    You should be proud, damm proud, of miss 10

  3. That’s fantastic. I’m going to have to get my boys to that stage!

  4. That’s so cute! And by cute I mean brilliant. I taught some 14/15 year old girls last year on an access programme and it amazed me how bright and open they were considering the 17/18 year olds I was teaching in university seemed to be such dullards and apathetic thinkers. I can’t help but wonder what happens to them… and wonder if the hoops we make them jump through to get into university closes their mind in some way, or weeds out the open minded.

  5. Pingback: Daily Femmostroppo Reader - March 14, 2009 — Hoyden About Town

  6. Well done Deborah.

  7. Good for you, Deborah, and good luck to Miss Ten.

    It’s a hard row rearing the perfect human (to correct the misogynistic Speights ad).

  8. (to correct the misogynistic Speights ad)

    But no, you see, because the ad is ironic! Somebody once explained to me in diagram form, so it must be true.

    (Miss Ten rocks.)

  9. Your daughters sound terrific!!

  10. Does anyone know the lineage of Mary Wollstonecraft? I know she was daughter of John Edward Wollstonecraft who was son of a silk trader and property developer. But not sure of her grandfathers name? Also I am looking for the details on her brothers and sisters and their descendants.

    My grandfather is David Woolstencroft (yes the name changed after some generations) and I am told he is the cousin of Mary Wollstonecraft.

    Thanks — Matt.