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  1. Kathleen Ann Ahearn, The Passions and Self-Esteem in Mary Astell's Early Feminist Prose.
    This dissertation examines the influence of Cambridge Platonism and materialist philosophy on Mary Astell's early feminism. More specifically, I argue that Astell co-opts Descartes's theory of regulating the passions in his final publication, The Passions of the Soul, to articulate a comprehensive, Enlightenment and body friendly theory of feminine self-esteem that renders her feminism modern. My analysis of Astell's theory of feminine self-esteem follows both textual and contextual cues, thus allowing for a reorientation of her early feminism vis-a-vis contemporary feminist (...)
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  2. Deborah Boyle (2007). Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom From Domination - by Patricia Springborg. Philosophical Books 48 (4):359-360.
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  3. Jacqueline Broad (2015). The Philosophy of Mary Astell: An Early Modern Theory of Virtue. Oxford University Press.
    Mary Astell is best known today as one of the earliest English feminists. This book sheds new light on her writings by interpreting her first and foremost as a moral philosopher—as someone committed to providing guidance on how best to live. The central claim of this work is that all the different strands of Astell’s thought—her epistemology, her metaphysics, her philosophy of the passions, her feminist vision, and her conservative political views—are best understood in light of her ethical objectives. To (...)
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  4. Jacqueline Broad (2014). Mary Astell on Marriage and Lockean Slavery. History of Political Thought 35 (4):717–38.
    In the 1706 third edition of her Reflections upon Marriage, Mary Astell alludes to John Locke’s definition of slavery in her descriptions of marriage. She describes the state of married women as being ‘subject to the inconstant, uncertain, unknown, Arbitrary Will of another Man’ (Locke, Two Treatises, II.22). Recent scholars maintain that Astell does not seriously regard marriage as a form of slavery in the Lockean sense. In this paper, I defend the contrary position: I argue that Astell does seriously (...)
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  5. Jacqueline Broad (2011). Mary Astell's Machiavellian Moment? Politics and Feminism in Moderation Truly Stated. In Jo Wallwork & Paul Salzman (eds.), Early Modern Englishwomen Testing Ideas. Ashgate 9-23.
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  6. Jacqueline Broad (2009). Mary Astell on Virtuous Friendship. Parergon: Journal of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Early Modern Studies 26 (2):65-86.
    According to some scholars, Mary Astell’s feminist programme is severely limited by its focus on self-improvement rather than wider social change. In response, I highlight the role of ‘virtuous friendship’ in Astell’s 1694 work, A Serious Proposal to the Ladies. Building on classical ideals and traditional Christian principles, Astell promotes the morally transformative power of virtuous friendship among women. By examining the significance of such friendship to Astell’s feminism, we can see that she did in fact aim to bring about (...)
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  7. Jacqueline Broad (2007). Astell, Cartesian Ethics, and the Critique of Custom. In William Kolbrener & Michal Michelson (eds.), Mary Astell: Reason, Gender, Faith. Ashgate 165-79.
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  8. Jacqueline Broad (2002). Women Philosophers of the Seventeenth Century. Cambridge University Press.
    In this rich and detailed study of early modern women's thought, Jacqueline Broad explores the complexity of women's responses to Cartesian philosophy and its intellectual legacy in England and Europe. She examines the work of thinkers such as Mary Astell, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Margaret Cavendish, Anne Conway and Damaris Masham, who were active participants in the intellectual life of their time and were also the respected colleagues of philosophers such as Descartes, Leibniz and Locke. She also illuminates the continuities between (...)
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  9. Alice Browne (1988). The Celebrated Mary Astell: An Early English Feminist. History of European Ideas 9 (4):505-506.
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  10. Cynthia B. Bryson (1998). Mary Astell: Defender of the "Disembodied Mind". Hypatia 13 (4):40 - 62.
    This paper demonstrates how Mary Astell's version of Cartesian dualism supports her disavowal of female subordination and traditional gender roles, her rejection of Locke's notion of "thinking matter" as a major premise for rejecting his political philosophy of "social contracts" between men and women, and, finally, her claim that there is no intrinsic difference between genders in terms of ratiocination, the primary assertion that grants her the title of the first female English feminist.
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  11. Karen Detlefsen (forthcoming). Cartesianism and its Feminist Promise and Limits: The Case of Mary Astell. In Catherine Wilson & Stephen Gaukroger (eds.), Mind and Nature in Descartes and Cartesianism. Oxford University Press
    In this paper, I consider Mary Astell's contributions to the history of feminism, noting her grounding in and departure from Cartesianism and its relation to women.
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  12. Karen Detlefsen (forthcoming). Women, Liberty, and Forms of Feminism. In Jacqueline Broad & Karen Detlefsen (eds.), Women and Liberty, 1600-1800: Philosophical Essays. Oxford University Press
    This chapter shows how Mary Astell and Margaret Cavendish can reasonably be understood as early feminists in three senses of the term. First, they are committed to the natural equality of men and women, and related, they are committed to equal opportunity of education for men and women. Second, they are committed to social structures that help women develop authentic selves and thus autonomy understood in one sense of the word. Third, they acknowledge the power of production relationships, especially friendships (...)
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  13. Karen Detlefsen (2016). Custom Freedom and Equality: Mary Astell on Marriage and Women's Education. In Penny Weiss & Alice Sowaal (eds.), Feminist Interpretations of Mary Astell. Penn State University Press 74-92.
    Whatever may be said about contemporary feminists’ evaluation of Descartes’ role in the history of feminism, Mary Astell herself believed that Descartes’ philosophy held tremendous promise for women. His urging all people to eschew the tyranny of custom and authority in order to uncover the knowledge that could be found in each one of our unsexed souls potentially offered women a great deal of intellectual and personal freedom and power. Certainly Astell often read Descartes in this way, and Astell herself (...)
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  14. Jane Duran (2006). Eight Women Philosophers: Theory, Politics, and Feminism. University of Illinois Press.
    Overviews -- Hildegard of Bingen -- Anne Conway -- Mary Astell -- Mary Wollstonecraft -- Harriet Taylor Mill -- Edith Stein -- Simone Weil -- Simone de Beauvoir -- Conclusions.
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  15. Jane Duran (2000). Mary Astell: A Pre-Humean Christian Empiricist and Feminist. In Cecile T. Tougas & Sara Ebenreck (eds.), Presenting Women Philosophers. Temple University Press
  16. Sarah Ellenzweig (2003). The Love of God and the Radical Enlightenment: Mary Astell's Brush with Spinoza. Journal of the History of Ideas 64 (3):379-397.
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  17. Ronald J. Glass (1984). Hume on the Cartesian Theory of Substance. Southern Journal of Philosophy 22 (4):497-508.
    While most of hume's criticisms of the doctrine of substance are epistemological and theory-Independent, We show that in "treatise" i.Iv.5, Hume develops a metaphysical criticism of the cartesian theory of substance. Using three of pierre bayle's arguments of his own ends, He argues that on an empiricist theory of meaning, The cartesian theory of substance is reduced to absurdity.
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  18. Karen Green (2012). When is a Contract Theorist Not a Contract Theorist? Mary Astell and Catharine Macaulay as Critics of Thomas Hobbes. In Nancy Hirschmann Joanne Wright (ed.), Feminist Interpretations of Thomas Hobbes. Penn State 169-89.
    Although Catharine Macaulay was a contract theorist and early feminist her philosophy is not based on a concept of liberty like that of Hobbes, but on a notion of individual liberty as self government close to that accepted by Mary Astell. This raises the question of whether criticisms of liberal feminism which assume that it is rooted in Hobbes's suspect notion of freedom and consent may miss there mark.
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  19. Alastair Hamilton (2010). Epicureanism at the Origins of Modernity. By Catherine Wilson and Letters Concerning the Love of God. By Mary Astell and John Norris. Edited by E. Derek Taylor and Melvyn New. [REVIEW] Heythrop Journal 51 (1):146-147.
  20. Jocelyn Harris (2012). Philosophy and Sexual Politics in Mary Astell and Samuel Richardson. Intellectual History Review 22 (3):445-463.
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  21. S. Hutton (1999). Mary Astell: Political Writings; Mary Wollstonecraft: A Vindication of the Rights of Men, A Vindication of the Rights of Women. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 7:176-177.
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  22. Sarah Hutton (2014). The Christian Religion, as Professed by a Daughter of the Church of England by Mary Astell. Journal of the History of Philosophy 52 (4):847-848.
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  23. William Kolbrener & Michal Michelson (eds.) (2007). Mary Astell: Reason, Gender, Faith. Ashgate.
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  24. A. Lister (2004). Marriage and Misogyny: The Place of Mary Astell in the History of Political Thought. History of Political Thought 25 (1):44-72.
    This article qualifies and supplements the interpretation of Astell's Reflections on Marriage as an attack on contract theories of politics. Astell was undoubtedly a conservative critic of Locke, but also deserves her reputation as a feminist critic of marriage, since the primary purpose of her Reflections was to get women to reflect on whether to marry, and seriously to consider not marrying. The essay supports this interpretation by locating Astell's Reflections in the context of the querelle des femmes. Viewed as (...)
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  25. John McCrystal (1993). Revolting Women the Use of Revolutionary Discourse in Mary Astell and Mary Wollstonecraft Compared. History of Political Thought 14 (2):189-203.
  26. Joanne E. Myers (2013). Enthusiastic Improvement: Mary Astell and Damaris Masham on Sociability. Hypatia 28 (3):533-550.
    Many commentators have contrasted the way that sociability is theorized in the writings of Mary Astell and Damaris Masham, emphasizing the extent to which Masham is more interested in embodied, worldly existence. I argue, by contrast, that Astell's own interest in imagining a constitutively relational individual emerges once we pay attention to her use of religious texts and tropes. To explore the relevance of Astell's Christianity, I emphasize both how Astell's Christianity shapes her view of the individual's relation to society (...)
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  27. Regan Penaluna (2010). Mary Astell. The Philosophers' Magazine 51 (51):98-100.
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  28. Katherine Pepper-Smith (1992). Gender as a Wild Card in Theories of Human Nature Mary Astell and Mary Wollstonecraft on Education for Women.
  29. Amy Schmitter (2013). Passions and Affections. In Peter R. Anstey (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of British Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century. Oxford University Press 442-471.
    This chapter examines the views of seventeenth-century British philosophers on passions and affections. It explains that about 8,000 books published during this period mentioned passion and that it started with Thomas Wright's Passions of the Mind in General. The chapter also explores the intellectual basis of the writers who wrote about passion – which includes Augustinianism, Aristotelianism, stoicism, Epicureanism, and medicine – and furthermore, analyzes the relevant works of Francis Bacon, Thomas Hobbes, Henry More, and Lord Shaftesbury.
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  30. Michael Smith (1987). The Humean Theory of Motivation. Mind 96 (381):36-61.
  31. Alice Sowaal (2008). Mary Astell. Journal of the History of Philosophy.
    Project MUSE - Journal of the History of Philosophy - Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Project MUSE Journals Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 E-ISSN: 1538-4586 Print ISSN: 0022-5053 DOI: 10.1353/hph.0.0014 Reviewed by Alice SowaalSan Francisco State University Patricia Springborg. Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination. Cambridge-New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005. Pp. (...)
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  32. Alice Sowaal (2008). Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom From Domination. [REVIEW] Journal of the History of Philosophy 46 (2):322-323.
    Project MUSE - Journal of the History of Philosophy - Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Project MUSE Journals Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 E-ISSN: 1538-4586 Print ISSN: 0022-5053 DOI: 10.1353/hph.0.0014 Reviewed by Alice SowaalSan Francisco State University Patricia Springborg. Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination. Cambridge-New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005. Pp. (...)
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  33. Alice Sowaal (2008). Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom From Domination. Journal of the History of Philosophy 46 (2):pp. 322-323.
    Project MUSE - Journal of the History of Philosophy - Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Project MUSE Journals Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination Journal of the History of Philosophy Volume 46, Number 2, April 2008 E-ISSN: 1538-4586 Print ISSN: 0022-5053 DOI: 10.1353/hph.0.0014 Reviewed by Alice SowaalSan Francisco State University Patricia Springborg. Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom from Domination. Cambridge-New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005. Pp. (...)
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  34. Alice Sowaal (2007). Mary Astell's Serious Proposal: Mind, Method, and Custom. Philosophy Compass 2 (2):227–243.
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  35. M. Sowal (forthcoming). Mary Astell. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  36. Patricia Springborg (2005). Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom From Domination. Cambridge University Press.
    Philosopher, theologian, educational theorist, feminist and political pamphleteer, Mary Astell was an important figure in the history of ideas of the early modern period. Among the first systematic critics of John Locke's entire corpus, she is best known for the famous question which prefaces her Reflections on Marriage: 'If all men are born free, how is it that all women are born slaves?' She is claimed by modern Republican theorists and feminists alike but, as a Royalist High Church Tory, the (...)
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  37. Kathleen M. Squadrito (1987). Mary Astell's Critique of Locke's View of Thinking Matter. Journal of the History of Philosophy 25 (3):433-439.
  38. E. Derek Taylor (2006). Review of Patricia Springborg, Mary Astell: Theorist of Freedom From Domination. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2006 (11).
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  39. E. Derek Taylor (2001). Mary Astell's Ironic Assault on John Locke's Theory of Thinking Matter. Journal of the History of Ideas 62 (3):505-522.
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  40. Dr Connie Titone (2007). Pulling Back the Curtain: Relearning the History of the Philosophy of Education 1. Educational Studies 41 (2):128-147.
    Women have played an undeniable part in shaping the history of philosophy and philosophy of education for at least 1,000 years. Yet, current anthologies, encyclopedias, and textbooks in the field rarely recognize large numbers of women's works as consequential to our understanding of the development of educational topics and debates. This article, using the work of Herrad of Hohenbourg (1100s), Julian of Norwich (1342-c.1429), Christine de Pisan (c.1364-c.1430), and Mary Astell (1666-1731) traces women's early philosophical arguments concerning their own nature (...)
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  41. Penny A. Weiss (2004). Mary Astell: Including Women's Voices in Political Theory. Hypatia 19 (3):63-84.
  42. Penny A. Weiss (2004). Mary Astell: Including Women's Voices in Political Theory. Hypatia 19 (3):63-84.
  43. Catherine Wilson (2004). Love of God and Love of Creatures: The Masham-Astell Debate. History of Philosophy Quarterly 21 (3):281 - 298.