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Development of Political Theories Essay

This paper seeks to discuss what two philosophers say about feminism and the importance of what they have said or the effect of their ideas to the policy of life. The two persons are Mary Wollstonecraft and Simone de Beauvoir. Mary Wollstonecraft states that unwilling submission to any person, institution, or custom is not good to women as the same could limit, degrade and destroy the person. The philosopher in effect believes in reason so that she further asserts that infallible and God-given reason should control all human thought and action (Philosophy Professor, 2008a).

In support for having reason, she further argues that women must have the freedom to cultivate reason, which she believes be to the key to self-improvement and social change. Wollstonecraft has also her strong belief in environment and education which shape character and morality. In support of her belief, she forwards that idea that education is the right of all humankind, including women, so that through education women can gain independence and equality (Philosophy Professor, 2008a).

The ideas of Mary Wollstonecraft are very important to making policies on life particularly or equality of humankind regardless of gender because unwilling submission connotes lack of freedom and necessarily of reason. That education is important is beyond question since the same opens up the minds of people to knowledge about the truth that would lead them to perform their roles according to the dictates of said truth and reason. Her dream to have independence and equality is consistent with basic human rights.

Simone de Beauvoir, on the other hand, believes that human beings tragically live under an ambiguous condition but still they must assume responsibility for the direction of their lives. She also believes that every person is originally free and that women have been compelled by men to be the second sex (Philosophy Professor, 2008b). Implying loss of freedom of women, there is strong basis for her assertion that historical and cultural conditions under which women have been oppressed should not stop these women from assuming their human dignity as free and independent persons (Philosophy Professor, 2008b).

In other words, losing the freedom need not be a hopeless for she believes that not doing anything to restore that lost freedom that will lead these women to become free and independent indeed is an abject of failure for in the end fate is still a matter of choice. The philosopher’s position is important for it reasserts responsibility of humankind, not only women to whatever is happening to them.

It can be concluded that each thinker had a part in having promoted the cause of feminism which basically include equality, freedom and independence. Mary Wollstonecraft may have put it more dramatically by describing what is not to have freedom by making an unwilling submission while Simone de Beauvoir essentially has pointed responsibility for lost freedom– that is if women suffer their fate, it was because of their failure to assume responsibility in invoking that lost freedom.

While Wollstonecraft states the importance of education that would lead to opening up the minds of women to knowledge, truth and dictates of reason, Simone de Beauvoir was still assuming a freedom of choice to be reasserted by women because of her premise of human beings having to live tragically under an ambiguous condition. It could be deduced that both thinkers have their own followers who are led to the common objective of women to get what they deserved as human beings.

References: Philosophy Professor (2008a) Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797){www document} URL http://www. philosophyprofessor. com/philosophers/mary-wollstonecraft. php, Accessed November 30, 2008 Philosophy Professor (2008b) Simone de Beauvoir (1908-1986) {www document} URL http://www. philosophyprofessor. com/philosophers/simone-de-beauvoir. php, Accessed November 30, 2008


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