Catherine Sawbridge Macaulay (†June 22, 1791)
Macaulay was an English philosopher born near Canterbury in 1731. She fought for equality of women and criticized contemporary theories of gender difference. Macaulay argued against Rousseau’s complementarity theory, according to which the subordination of women results from the biologically based difference between men and women. She attributed the intellectual inferiority of most women of her time to their limited position in society and called for consistent coeducation. Accordingly, men and women should be taught the same subjects equally. In addition, she opposed slavery and contempt for humanity and fight for a more democratic state constitution.
“There is no doubt that Catharine Macaulay’s contemporaries saw her as a radical, republican writer, committed to what seemed to many of them to be an unrealistic belief in universal rights and the natural equality of mankind. “ – More can be read in Catharine Macaulay and the concept of “radical enlightenment”, Intellectual History Review (2021).Article