Margaret Cavendish

As was the case with Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, before last term, I had never heard of this writer.  I feel as though it is an ignorance on my part, knowing now how hard female writers of the eighteenth-century worked and the effort they put into their writings.

When I first saw Cavendish’s name on the schedule all I could think of was something about an earring.  I remembered the classroom discussion from last term about how she wrote that there could possibly be small worlds within our world.  She was very interested in science and many people thought she was ‘crazy’.  That was pretty much the extent of my knowledge base of Cavendish.

After reading her biography for this specific week, I had a whole new respect and admiration for her.  She was a woman way ahead of her times and I feel as though she would almost fit into today’s society.  Her thoughts against animal testing/cruelty are really amazing.  I know that there are still people today who don’t feel that there is anything wrong with animal testing in today’s society.

It was also nice to see that she published her work under her proper name…something that was not the ‘norm’ for women writers of her time.  I think that these facts speak wonders for her character and personality.  To me, it says that she was a very strong willed and determined woman.  She saw the value in standing up for her beliefs and was proud of her accomplishments.  Most importantly, I love the fact that she refused to apologize for her grammar mistakes…I take that as her way of throwing it back into the faces of her male contemporaries.  Even though she was lacking the proper education that they all rightfully received, she was succeeding none the less with her writing.  I’m sure that the women readers of her time appreciated her work even more for this.

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