Women’s Rights

A Room of One’s Own

Virginia Woolf Documentary

The Mind and Times of Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf’s Suicide Letter to her husband Leonard Woolf

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft

a vindication of the rights of woman

Project carried out by two students.  The audio is not great, but the video sums up beautifully Mary Wollstonecraft’s main ideas and objectives

The Reception of Mary Wollstonecraft in Early America

Mona Lisa Smile

Mona Lisa Smile


From Howard Zinn’s book “The People Speak” I read “Lowell Mill Girl” and “Women’s Declaration of Rights”.  The latter, which I am going to link here, prompted the following poem.  Please post yours.  I was really positively impressed when you read them this morning.  You are certainly growing into better writers than your teacher of English.  Congratulations girls!  I am proud of you.


A woman is a NOBODY

A woman has no rights

A woman cannot choose

But do what a man decrees for her

A woman cannot study

A woman cannot work for her own suppport

A woman cannot choose

But live with a man

A woman cannot choose

But be a mother

A woman is a NOBODY


A wife is everything

A wife begets children

A wife supports her husband

A wife makes her husband’s life bloom

A wife is a woman

A woman is a SOMEBODY

Great example of what some film studies students did to recap in an original way the great impact of the Suffraggettes’ Movement in the history of women’s fight for emancipation and equality.

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29 Responses to Women’s Rights

  1. Alice Piccolo says:

    What am I here for?
    I, as a woman,
    I am nothing by myself.
    The efforts I put on studying, on working, on reading
    aren’t recognized by anyone unless I am married.
    Once I do get married, though, everytnig changes…
    oh yes…then I will succeed.
    I will be someone’s wife!
    Therefore, this someone is going to have an educated,
    intelligent and productive woman.
    Is that what I am here for?
    Well, if so, I will submit myself to this society no more.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Nice title. It seems that your poem speaks of today’s women too. Some of us seem to ask ourselves this question. Though prompted by the study we carried out in class about the conditions of women in the past, their struggle for emancipation, this poem reflects some dilemmas some contempoary women in the world experience and grapple with.
      Well done.

  2. Adua says:


    Scream out loud
    don’t be afraid
    let them hear your words of anger and indignation
    since you are a woman
    since you are a person
    and you have not been created to be depredated

    Seek the courage to stand up
    and help them not to be deaf

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Beautiful title, it infuses with new energies. If only women managed to help one another to find the courage to become who they really want to, if only….

  3. Silvia S. says:


    I have a husband
    therefore I am?

  4. Silvia M. says:

    I AM

    Liberty is
    all I’m asking for
    Liberty is
    in my dreams, in my skin, in my bones.
    Day and night, it
    follows me as a shadow,
    far away,
    but there,
    just because I AM.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Your poem seems to convey the strong desire to be free, a desire that pervades the mind and body of a woman who cannot be free, though she longs for freedom. Nice poem.

  5. Giada Eroina says:

    Not only your wife

    I’m nobody
    in an antislavery society
    I’m your wife
    I cannot write
    I cannot think
    I cannot choose
    I have no rights
    Our essence is destroyed
    Our values are tied to the house
    as the chains with their lock
    I’m a woman
    I’m not less than you
    You, men, are not allowed
    to make us only your housewives any more

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      A vehement outcry. Anger seems to ooze from your words, you build up your protest. Really effective. Another quality that I found in your poem is that of sending out a message that is contagious!

  6. Sara Perin says:


    I am a woman. I am a man. I am a child.
    Does it matter? I am a human being.
    If I tell you I am a man, then I can live.
    If I tell you I am a woman, then you kill me.
    But what is the real difference? It is just a word.
    Well, I’ll tell you I am a human being, then you have to let me live.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Creating the equation “man: human being: respect”; “woman: human being: slave in want of respect” is really powerful. You oblige the reader to think about the condition of women and you throw the blunt reality of lack of their freedom into the reader’s face. Loved reading your poem. 🙂

  7. Martina Cimmino says:


    You, Man, with your brain
    Able to build everything to make my life easier,
    You, you still believe I’m your slave.
    But I ask you:
    What would you do if I was not home
    As you come back from work?
    What would you eat?
    Without me, a wife
    That cleans, cooks, washes..
    You wouldn’t be able to live.
    You would neither exist!
    Because are women that give life to your children.

    But with these words
    I’m not saying we are better.
    Man and women are halves of the same sphere.
    We perfectly match, we are necessary each other
    To enrich humanity.
    You need me as I need you,
    but I’ve never said you are less than me
    just because you can’t cook.

    You lessen me,
    But I give a lesson to you:
    Don’t make who’s close to you your enemy,
    Be respectful.
    Otherwise I will raise my voice till you became Death.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Wonderful poem Martina. The final line is not effective, though, since it is not clear what you mean “till you become Death”. Does it mean “till I kill you?”
      The whole poem is beautifully rendered by your argumentation, your disclosing the need to find equality between men and women, becuse they need each other to be fully themselves, to reach their full potentials. Without either of the two, both men and women feed each other with energies and vitality. They complete each other.

  8. Alessia says:

    What is a woman?
    She is a wife obliged to an abject life
    Working, dyingat the mills built by men.
    But why don’t they work in the poor conditions we are forced to?
    Because they can react,
    They are not agrieved, oppressed, deprived of rights.

    But I have the courage, I want to give vent to my will.
    I want liberty.
    And you will be lost: you will be obliged to the abject life.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Like some of your classmates’ poems, yours expounds anger and the fierce desire to find your own space. You give voice to “your” frustrated dimension, to the impossibility of being yourself, of having your own space. The final line is quite strong, it reads as a sort of menace: you man, you will experience the dreadful life I am subjected to, sooner or later you will suffer from the lack of freedom I am confronted with every day. Either you understand my needs or you will….”. Very powerful closing line!

  9. Fabiola says:


    We can’t speak
    we are dumb, blind and deaf.
    We can’t protest
    we are weak, fragile and feeble.
    We can’t understand
    we are inferior and submitted.
    How many men don’t need a woman by their side?
    How many of them could manage to lead their lives without a wife?

    We feel oppressed, discriminated and deprived of our rights
    we feel abandoned and despised

    Everyone forgets we are citizens like everybody, with duties and rights
    everyone forgets we are women, bofore being wives

    We have the force to act
    we can raise our voices

    We speak

    Fabiola Celaj

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      You do not just want women to speak, but to SPEAK OUT, to let everybody hear their voices of protest. Nice poem, Fabiola, really nice.

  10. cristianaziraldo says:

    Be proud of your creative skills. You wrote wonderful poems and quite frankly I cannot say which one I like most, because they are all so exceptionally beautiful. Thanks for having posted them (it is great sharing your insight into women’s emancipation with other potential readers of this blog!)

  11. Silvia Fedrigo says:

    We are.

    Men and women,
    we are the same part of this unequal world.
    We must have the same rights of men.
    We are everything, we can be everything,
    not just wifes or mothers.
    We must pursue our rights,
    we must fight for them.
    We are strong, we are powerful,
    we are.

    Silvia Fedrigo

  12. Erika says:


    If we recollect our history
    As women
    We cannot help but feel indignation.
    After years and years of
    Usurpation, oppression, deprivations,
    After having sacrificed ourselves for you,
    For our families, for our husbands, for our children, for our houses,
    We hadn’t received even a bit of respect from you.
    Yet we do deserve it.
    We are more than this and
    We are going to prove it.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      Every human being is much more than the label forcibly attached to him/her. Every human being deserves being able to spread his/her wings and soar the skies freely, proudly, empowered with the certainty that wherever s/he goes s/he will be respected. This is freedom, this is the undeniable right women should benefit from too.

  13. Valentina says:

    I want to free myself
    from all these chains
    that are holding me back.
    Anger and indignation is what I feel.
    Usurpated and depravated is what I am.
    I want rights,
    I want equality,
    I want to be a woman
    without desiring to be a man.

    • Cristiana Ziraldo says:

      “Depraved” means immoral, thus I assume you wanted to write “deprived” (a slip of the finger, just a slip of the finger!!!).
      I love the closing lines, they are full of energizing power and they make a clear statement thus resounding the whole message of the poem itself.

  14. cristianaziraldo says:

    I love the idea of having your poems posted on my blog. Next year I won’t see you anylonger, you will be at university or somewhere else, perhaps roaming the hidden beauties of our world. I will miss you and when overwhelmed with bouts of longing for you, I will go back to your poems and visualise your exceptional faces.
    Thank you.

  15. Cristiana Ziraldo says:

    Assessing creative writing is not easy at all, however as I wrote on other occasions, I am very happy of the capabilities that you have all shown in expressing powerful feelings and challenging thoughts in English. This is the reason why sometimes I feel dejected: I see the full potentials you have, I would love you to become better and better users of the English language (playing with the language is a sign of “possessing” the language, making it your own, mastering it!), yet I am confronted with your impossibility of dedicating yourselves to it because you are overwhemed by all the other subjects you have to study. I hope one day Italian schools will allot more hours to the study of English, so that students will have the time to “deepen” their knowledge of it!

  16. irene pellegrini says:

    I WANT.
    I want ro react, to rebel, to raise my voice and
    say, that, we are all equal!
    I am a woman and perhaps I can do even better than a man,
    because I want to react.
    I have a lot of anger inside of me.
    I want to have a place in this world.
    I am a woman afetr all.

    • cristianaziraldo says:

      You certainly managed to write a poem that clarifies your views and makes your point strong and clear. Well done Irene. 😉

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