AP Women and the Enlightenment


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AP Women and the Enlightenment

  1. 1. Women and the Enlightenment
  2. 2. Perceptions of Women <ul><li>Feminism gained momentum in the Age of Enl. </li></ul><ul><li>Why?? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Notions of rationalism & tolerance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Print culture </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Montesquieu <ul><li>Supported equality for women </li></ul><ul><li>sympathetic to obstacles they faced ( The Persian Letters ) </li></ul><ul><li>held traditional beliefs re: man’s dominance in marriage & family </li></ul>
  4. 4. Rousseau’s “Emile” (1762) <ul><li>Men and women occupy separate spheres </li></ul>Worldly Sphere = Men Domestic Sphere = Women
  5. 5. Rousseau (cont.) <ul><li>Education of women: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>subordinate to men </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>pleasing to men </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Rousseau (cont.) <ul><li>Woman’s purpose = bear & raise children </li></ul><ul><li>Weaker/inferior to men EXCEPT in their capacity for feeling and giving love </li></ul><ul><li>No political rights </li></ul>
  7. 7. On the Bright Side… <ul><li>Portrayed role of wife & mom as fulfilling & noble </li></ul><ul><li>Gave women of nobility & bourgeoisie a sense of purpose </li></ul>
  8. 8. What I Think of Rousseau… Tomb of JJ Rousseau, Panthéon, Paris
  9. 9. Diderot & The Encyclopedia <ul><li>Published men almost exclusively </li></ul><ul><li>Articles that dealt w/ women often emphasized: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>physical weakness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>inferiority </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Usually attributed to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Menstruation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Childbirth </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Diderot (cont.) <ul><li>Women reared to be frivolous & unconcerned w/ important issues </li></ul><ul><li>Motherhood = most important occupation </li></ul><ul><li>Double standard on sexual behavior </li></ul>
  11. 11. (Some) Notable Women of the Enlightenment
  12. 12. Mary Wollstonecraft <ul><li>Mother of the feminist movement </li></ul><ul><li>Born in London, England </li></ul><ul><li>interested in becoming educated at an early age </li></ul>
  13. 13. Wollstonecraft (cont.) <ul><li>Sought personal liberty & economic independence </li></ul><ul><li>A Vindication of the Rights of Women (1792) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1 st book </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>controversial b/c she stated that men & women were created equal, but women rec’d less education </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. A Vindication of the Rights of Women <ul><li>Celebrates the rationality of women </li></ul><ul><li>Attacks the view of female education put forward by Rousseau & others who regarded women as weak, artificial & not capable of reasoning </li></ul>
  15. 15. Vindication (cont.) <ul><li>Rejects the education in dependency that Rousseau advocated in Émile </li></ul><ul><li>Woman must be intelligent in her own right, as she cannot assume that her husband will be intelligent! </li></ul>
  16. 16. Vindication (cont.) <ul><li>Maintained that this did not contradict the role of the woman as a mother or the role of the woman in the home </li></ul><ul><li>Said that “…meek wives are, in general, foolish mothers.” </li></ul>
  17. 17. Wollstonecraft (cont.) <ul><li>Both men and women criticized her and her books </li></ul><ul><li>In later writings, she sharply criticizes the conditions in which women (especially poor women) lived </li></ul>
  18. 18. Controversy <ul><li>Mother to illegitimate daughter (Fanny) </li></ul><ul><li>William Godwin (husband) </li></ul><ul><li>Mother of Mary Shelley ( Frankenstein) </li></ul>
  19. 19. Salons
  20. 20. Salons <ul><li>Pleasure - not the objective of Enl. salons </li></ul><ul><li>Many philosophes rejected the academy & university as their base </li></ul><ul><li>Turned to Parisian salons to continue conversations & practices </li></ul>
  21. 21. Salons (cont.) <ul><li>Salonnières </li></ul><ul><ul><li>listened attentively </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>filled in during silences </li></ul></ul><ul><li>One purpose of salons = satisfy self-determined educational needs of the women who started them </li></ul>
  22. 22. Salons (cont.) <ul><li>For salonnières, salons = socially acceptable substitute for the formal education denied them </li></ul>
  23. 23. Salon Bleu – Louis XV
  24. 24. Salon Jaune
  25. 26. Marie -Therese Geoffrin <ul><li>To many, hers = premier salon </li></ul><ul><li>Younger years: </li></ul><ul><li>Orphaned </li></ul><ul><li>At 14 married off to a wealthy man </li></ul>
  26. 27. <ul><li>In her 20s, apprenticed w/ Madame de Tencin </li></ul>
  27. 28. Geoffrin (cont.) <ul><li>Two innovations Geoffrin contributed to the salon: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Switched traditional late night dinner to a 1:00 dinner (to allow for an entire afternoon of conversation) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Created a regular, weekly salon dinner schedule </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Monday = artists </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Wednesday = men of letters </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>etc </li></ul></ul></ul>
  28. 29. Geoffrin (cont.) <ul><li>Mme. Geoffrin was so popular because she was a wonderful, attentive listener </li></ul><ul><li>She knew how to make other people talk their best. </li></ul>
  29. 30. Geoffrin (cont.) <ul><li>very generous  wealthy & willing to share </li></ul><ul><li>helped young authors </li></ul><ul><li>didn’t open her salon on Sundays to help poor </li></ul>
  30. 33. Madame Geoffrin’s Salon
  31. 34. Bust of Voltaire
  32. 35. Marquise de Pompadour <ul><li>Began visiting the court of Louis XV at Versailles </li></ul><ul><li>Watched her perform in plays at her own theater (Etoilles Estate) </li></ul>
  33. 36. Pompadour (cont.) <ul><li>1744: installed at court as Louis XV’s “official favorite” (title of Marquise) </li></ul><ul><li>Had profound effect over court life </li></ul>
  34. 37. Pompadour’s Effects <ul><li>Organized suppers </li></ul><ul><li>Brought performances to the theater </li></ul><ul><li>Brought back the sense of intimacy and extravagance that the French court had lost </li></ul>
  35. 38. Pompadour’s Effects (cont.) <ul><li>Commissioned artists </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Voltaire </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>François Boucher </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Encouraged the manufacture of porcelain </li></ul><ul><li>Decorated Versailles in the Rococo manner </li></ul>
  36. 39. Pompadour (cont.) <ul><li>King’s mistress for 5 years </li></ul><ul><li>Oct. 12, 1752 - King made her a duchess </li></ul>
  37. 40. Pompadour (cont.) <ul><li>Played a major role in influencing the Diplomatic Revolution of 1756 (the treaty that allied France with her former enemy Austria) </li></ul>
  38. 41. Pompadour (cont.) <ul><li>Held power & influence over the King </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Removed her enemies from office </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Enabled her friends to come into gov’t </li></ul></ul>
  39. 42. Pompadour (cont.) <ul><li>All of these proved to be disastrous to France </li></ul><ul><li>Led to her unpopularity  was hated & blamed for France’s misfortunes </li></ul>
  40. 43. The Pompadour <ul><li>Eventually, though, a really snazzy hair style would be named after her </li></ul><ul><li>so at least she had that going for her… </li></ul>