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View Diary: Supervixens #18: Wild Women of Wicked Wit (Or, an Evening with the Real Aphra Behn) (89 comments)

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  •  wit and Wollstonecraft (3+ / 0-)
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    tryptamine, hrh, Unitary Moonbat

    It's odd to think how different her era was from Behn and Astell's; the world had hardened against women's rights in many ways. It was only 100 years later, but Enlightenment thinkers of her time  were decidely anti-feminist.

    But if wit is a "lucky hit," then Aphra Behn must be some kinda Babe Ruth, know what I'm sayin'...?

    "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

    by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:13:08 PM PDT

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    •  I had to do a little digging to find that one (2+ / 0-)
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      tryptamine, aphra behn

      Wollstonecraft is a lot more dour than the women of the century before; most of her more readily-googleable quotes have the air of a voice-in-the-wilderness rant.  I dig her because she managed to pack so much living into such a short span of time - she's a model for how to remain unbowed in the face of tyranical oppression (in addition to just plain old bad luck).

      "He shall bow to no authority and acknowledge no king." - Lucian

      by Unitary Moonbat on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:29:35 PM PDT

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      •  liberals and conservatives, 17th/18th century (1+ / 0-)
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        Unitary Moonbat

        What's odd about the shift between their times: most of the "feminist" voices of Behn's era were "conservative"--i.e., Tories. They opposed the movements that we think of as "progressive"--the Whigs behind the Glorious Rveolution. In a weird way, they were right to do so; by Wollstonecraft's time, Enlightenment "progressives" like Rousseau had written women out fo the public sphere altogether. No wonder she sounds so desolate!

        It just goes to show you ahve to be careful in assigning present-day labels to past movements. The Tories of Behn's day were regessive in their embrace of royal power, to be sure. Yet they opposed the escesses of merchant capital in a way that seems very "liberal" today. And their tolerance for sexuality, their willingness to give women (elite women at least) a role in public life---these too seem progressive today.

        Ain't history fun? :)

        "This is a Revolution, dammit. We're going to have to offend SOMEbody!"--John Adams, *1776*

        by aphra behn on Thu Oct 19, 2006 at 09:42:58 PM PDT

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