This note accompanies the follow episode(s):
The Writer’s Almanac for May 7, 2017: Time with You

May 7, 2017: birthday: Olympe de Gouges

It’s is the birthday of playwright and activist Olympe de Gouges (books by this author), born in Montauban, France (1748), who said that if “woman has the right to mount the scaffold; she must equally have the right to mount the rostrum.” In the 1770s, de Gouges moved to Paris and became interested in politics. She wrote several pamphlets supporting the French Revolution, although she soon became disillusioned when the plights of women were ignored.

In 1791, in response to the new French constitution, she wrote Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen, which made the argument that the sexes were equal in nature, deserved equal sharing of property, and if both genders were treated as such, French society would be more stable.

Two years after its publication, de Gouges was arrested for sedition and sent to the guillotine.