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Wollstonecraft and Dickens Fight For Educational ReformAlthough they wanted it in different ways Mary Wollstonecraft and Charles Dickens both argued for educational reform Unhappy with the current state of women Mary Wollstonecraft in her A Vindication of the Rights of Woman demanded equal access to equal education for women Her main tactic was to persuade people that educating women would not only improve society as a whole but society would not advance until it happened Unlike Wollstonecraft Charles Dickens expressed a desire for a complete overhaul of the educational system in his book Hard Times Dickens believed that the current utilitarian based educational system lacked humanity something greatly needed for a complete education he showed this not by outright stating it but by giving an illustration of the system both in the classroom and at home and then showing the outcome of the methods used Womens education as we know it today was non-existent The education that women received was laughable at the very least when compared to the education of men According to our textbook the education of women consisted of basic literacy embroidery singing playing a piano or harpsichord dancing sketching and conversational French or Italian It is not hard to see that it just didnt compare to the education of men Women werent just uneducated they werent respected by men or even themselves They also had very little freedom Everything they owned upon marriage was forfeited to their husbands This is why some women opted to remain single but their lives werent any better than those married Wollstonecraft knew as well as anyone that she was born into a mans world She and her sisters worked various jobs trying to earn a living but it wasnt until she educated herself with something like a mans education that she gained freedom and self-respect This is what she wanted most for her fellow females She believed that women deserved equality with men For this
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