The Rights of Woman

I've been writing and reading about manhood because I am doing a treacherous paper over Steinbeck's "Flight". It's exhausting because I am not a man. I cannot to even begin to fathom what it's like to be a man. I don't even really care that much about manhood. I thought I would turn the tables, and read a little about women for a change. (Enjoy!)

The Rights of Woman
by Anna Letitia Barbauld

Yes, injured Woman! rise, assert thy right!
Woman! too long degraded, scorned, opprest;
O born to rule in partial Law's despite,
Resume thy native empire o'er the breast!

Go forth arrayed in panoply divine;
That angel pureness which admits no stain;
Go, bid proud Man his boasted rule resign,
And kiss the golden sceptre of thy reign.

Go, gird thyself with grace; collect thy store
Of bright artillery glancing from afar;
Soft melting tones thy thundering cannon's roar,
Blushes and fears thy magazine of war.

Thy rights are empire: urge no meaner claim,--
Felt, not defined, and if debated, lost;
Like sacred mysteries, which withheld from fame,
Shunning discussion, are revered the most.

Try all that wit and art suggest to bend
Of thy imperial foe the stubborn knee;
Make treacherous Man thy subject, not thy friend;
Thou mayst command, but never canst be free.

Awe the licentious, and restrain the rude;
Soften the sullen, clear the cloudy brow:
Be, more than princes' gifts, thy favours sued;--
She hazards all, who will the least allow.

But hope not, courted idol of mankind,
On this proud eminence secure to stay;
Subduing and subdued, thou soon shalt find
Thy coldness soften, and thy pride give way.

Then, then, abandon each ambitious thought,
Conquest or rule thy heart shall feebly move,
In Nature's school, by her soft maxims taught,
That separate rights are lost in mutual love.

(This is in the public domain.)


AMEN said...

so, unrelated to this post, and in reference to a post about CSA farms, i have found a group of them in our neck of the woods.
angela and i were a part of a co-op in oregon called organics to you that delivered local organic veggies and fruit once or twice a week for the ridiculous cost of something like 20 bucks a month. it was amazing, and now that i found out about csa through your blog, i am stoked to join the local branch. i smell an all local foods cook-off in the near future between you, peggy, and myself. i know angela, josh, and chris would love it.

AMEN said...

try just going to and putting in your zip code, that last link is too long.

Miss Steffy said...

dinosaurs eat man.....woman inherit the earth!