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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mary (a fiction), 13 Sept. 2010
This review is from: Mary and The Wrongs of Woman (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
This short "fiction" closely mirrors Wollstonecraft's early life. Dealing with her imperfect upbringing and parents' unhappy marriage. It also raises the contemporary issue of an independent woman.

I found the prose dull and laborious, however as an important feminist text it was immensely interesting.

I would only recommend this to someone reading for knowledge rather than enjoyment as I personally received little from the process of reading this book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A Performance of her Politics, 9 Nov. 2011
This review is from: Mary and The Wrongs of Woman (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Mary and The Wrongs of Woman (also known as Maria)were written by Mary Wollstonecraft at distant points in her career and thus demonstrate the progression of her thinking. These are Wollstonecraft's only novels and are concerned with the woman's treatment and position in society during the last decade of the 18th Century. It is generally understood that Wollstonecraft's novels were stagings of her politics which served to depict her arguments regarding the rights of woman for a female readership. 'Mary' is about a young girl's life after the death of her mother and her marriage to a young man for the purpose of saving her father's estate. It is often considered as a partial autobiography as the friendship depicted in the book has many parallels with Wollstonecraft's childhood friendship with a Fanny Blood. Written early in her career when Wollstonecraft admired the work of Rousseau, 'Mary' is written in the style of a sentimental novel. 'The Wrongs of Woman' was written much later in her career and was in fact published, incomplete, after her death. It is in the style of a gothic novel and tells the story of a young mother imprisoned in a mad house after she tries to separate from her adulterous, gambling husband.
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5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A temple of solitude, 27 Nov. 2005
By 
Luc REYNAERT (Beernem, Belgium) - See all my reviews
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The story of 'Mary' is all about moods.
Being badly treated by her husband, Mary flees in the arms of her friend Ann. After Ann's death, Mary meets another friend, Henry, who also dies. In a new confrontation with her husband, Mary longs for Heaven, 'a world where there is neither marrying, nor giving in marriage.'
The overall sentiment in this book is 'pity mistaken for love'.
Although Mary promises herself to 'do anything rather than be a slave', her attitude to life is resignation: 'I cannot argue against instincts.' 'Happiness was not to be founded on earth, for life is a dream, a frightful one.'
Against the sorry state of the majority of the English population (hunger, want of education, poverty, misery and dirt) or the hypocrisy of religion ('Many prayers may fall from the lips without purifying the heart'), her only reaction is melancholy: 'I have been wounded by ingratitude.'
There is also an undertone of fear of sexuality and pregnancies: 'love leads to madness.'
Mary is a victim of life. She doesn't live. She is lived.
This story is certainly not one of the highlights of English literature. Its plot is poor and it doesn't have the biting aggression of Mary Wollstonecraft's other story 'Maria'.
But it is still a worth-while read.
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Mary and The Wrongs of Woman (Oxford World's Classics)
Mary and The Wrongs of Woman (Oxford World's Classics) by Mary Wollstonecraft (Paperback - 26 Feb. 2009)
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