British writer and feminist, of Irish descent. She was associated with a radical circle known as the ‘English Jacobins’, whose members included Thomas Paine and William Godwin. In 1790 she published A Vindication of the Rights of Man in reply to Edmund Burke's Reflections on the Revolution in France. Her best‐known work, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), defied Jean‐Jacques Rousseau's assumptions about male superiority and championed educational equality for women. In 1797 she married Godwin and died shortly after giving birth to their daughter Mary, who became the wife of the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.
Subjects: arts and humanities.