Reading Response 2: Mary Wollstonecraft and William Wordsworth

If you read the introduction to Mary Wollstonecraft or watched the short video, you know that she was a sort of wild woman in her life but immensely reasonable in her writing. Both she and Wordsworth spent time in France (not together) during the time of the French Revolution and were profoundly affected by the ideals of the leaders of the early part of the revolution. Her masterpiece, of course, is A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. She eventually married William Godwin and had a daughter, also called Mary. Her daughter married Percy Bysshe Shelley and became Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein (and other stories, including “The Mortal Immortal”). While in France, Wordsworth became involved with a French woman named Annette Vallon, who had a child by him, though they never married. He went back to England and settled down to write poetry and marry someone else and have children. He supported his daughter by Vallon, however. His poem “It is a Beauteous Evening, Calm and Free” reveals his love for his daughter Caroline.