Declaration of the Rights of Women

A recent document has come to my attention. It is called the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizens. I commend those who wrote it, it really is quite a feat, a big step forward. However, they did leave out one crucial thing in that document, the rights of women. The rights of women have hardly been mentioned in the declaration, so I decided to write my own document called the Declaration of the Rights of Women. I hope that you take this declaration in to consideration.

Article 1: Every single woman is entitled to these rights. No matter where they live, what their heritage is , what their religion is, what their culture is, whether they have a disability, whether they are rich or poor. No woman should be treated unfairly on any basis

Article 2: The government has a responsibility to make sure your rights are protected.

Article 3: Women have freedom of expression as long as it harms no one, women are able to express any thoughts or opinions through speech, through writing, and through art freely without fear of prosecution or prejudice.

Article 4: Women have the right to practice whichever religion they choose, or none at all if they please, without fear of persecution or prejudice.

Article 5: Women are entitled to an education and should be given. This education should be equally as good to the education that the male populace receives.

Article 6: Women have the right to work outside of the domestic environment and are entitled to good jobs the money that comes with them. These women in the workforce should be paid equal to a man performing the same or a very similar job. Women are entitled to earn their own money.

Article 7: Women should be able to divorce a man and have equal rights to the objects that they have together.

Article 8: Women are entitled to the same inheritance rights as any man.

Article 9: Women have the right to come together and form clubs and sectionals. These clubs and sectionals should be treated with the same respect as a club or sectional for men.

Article 10: Women have the right to get information that is important to their well-being, from newspaper, books, pamphlets and other sources.

Article 11: Women have the right to publish information, opinions, or thoughts as long as they are not harmful in the form of books, newspapers, and pamphlets so long as it is not slander.

Article 12: Women have the right to be protected from being hurt and mistreated, in body or mind.

Article 13: Women are entitled to the same voting rights as men.

Article 14: Women have the right to participate in politics and have the right to a voice in government in the form of a seat in the General estate, and in the form of their won political parties.

Article 15: Women are entitled to all of the same rights as men.

 

Rest assured that I will see these rights be brought forth into legislation or die trying to bring equality to this country. I have to fight against old views that have been in place for many years, but I will continue to insist that women are entitled to the same rights as men and are equals. I will continue to publish declarations, pamphlets, books and plays that shed light on this issue. I hope that you take my declaration into serious consideration.

–Marie Gouze aka Olympe de Gouge

 

“The Troubles of the Young Playwright”

The following is an excerpt from my most recent play about a young woman with a non-traditional life style as she struggles to become a playwright. This particular scene is the turning point at which the main character, named for my sake, is having an epiphany. It is highly biographical and resembles my life in many ways. You may notice that the format is weird for a play script, however, this is the format of my time and I have written nearly all of my scripts in this format. I hope that you enjoy this short story about me, Olympe De Gouges, and my life as a playwright with a modern life style.

Olympe (Walking in street with Renee): I’ll never make it as a playwright! The things I want and need to talk about in my plays are just too controversial. I try so hard to show the public about what’s happening to slaves; about what’s happening to women and how they are mistreated and often beaten. I want to make a difference with my writing, but no one will listen. Just when I think that they listen, when my play is accepted, I am rejected as they never actually perform my play for fear that it is too controversial. Renee, help me make sense of this mess, what do I do?

Renee (Holding a large stack of books): Well, what I hear you saying is that you want your works to be published so that you can make an impact through your writing to tell important narratives that the public needs hear, but they are just too controversial. You are being censored because of common convention and tradition.

Olympe (Loudly): Exactly, finally, someone who gets me! Speaking about tradition and convention, I get so much nonsense for my life style. It’s my life, just because it doesn’t conform to their ideas of what a woman should be and do doesn’t mean that my life is worth any less. If I don’t want to marry my lover, Jacques, I don’t have to. So what if we had children without being married, its 1788 for goodness sake! I don’t need to get married to know that our love is important. A woman’s sole job is not to marry off, we all have just as much potential as any man.

Renee: I agree, it is your choice if you want to marry, and no one should judge you for your personal decisions. They don’t know the whole story.

Olympe: You’re right, they don’t know that just after I first married, that my husband had died…

{There is now a flash back to that time, it is not important to this exert but it is important to the story overall, the script will resume where it left off}

Renee: You have to fight against traditions to get your ideas out there, I can’t imagine being an unmarried female playwright in a time like this.

Olympe: I know, it’s really hard, I’ll tell you that much. What can I do to overcome all of this? What can I do to get my ideas out there and have a stronger sense of security with my life style?

Renee: Well, that is only a question that you can answer Olympe. I know that you can figure this out.

Olympe: I can’t do anything to change people’s perceptions of my work to get more publicity or change people’s views about my life style. However, what I can to is continue to try publishing my works and persevere. I can keep challenging traditions through my writing and in my life to show people that I am more than what they make me to be and that we all deserve equal rights. Kings, peasants, Nobles, slaves, women, Priests, religious minorities, and everyone else. We all deserve equal rights.

I hope that you enjoyed the first portion of my play and that it gave you insight in to my life as well as where I stand on some pressing social issues of the day.