The Bluestockings

Probably, if you saw a sentence, which contained words ’lady’, ‘blue stockings’ and ‘society’, you would think of a club for women, who are interested in fashion… After all, there is a girl, a clique and  a  piece of clothing – a BLUE piece of clothing!

Yet, this is not the matter!

‘Bluestocking’ is a term for a literary, well-educated woman in 1700s. A woman, who is passionate about knowledge, literature and politics. These women organised meetings to which they invited men to talk with. They discussed different subjects together, as a group; contrary to normal gatherings of men and women, when each sex took the other corner of the room.

Mrs. Elizabeth Montagu, who is said to be the creator of the first Bluestocking Society in England, focused on inviting aristocratic men, with whom the conversation would always be absorbing. However, it was strictly forbidden to swear or even talk about politics!  Instead, they exchanged views on literature and cultural events, as well as women’s role in the society, the development of humanity or ‘natural laws’. They attempted to prove that women could also take an active part in  the humankind.

In my personal opinion, the Bluestockings were one of the first emancipated women in the world. Their meetings were public, not held in secret. Everybody knew about their evening parties. The purpose of Bluestockings was to give every woman  a chance to speak up her mind – and not be judged or silenced. Their policy resulted in women’s attempts of gaining higher education.

What are your opinions about the Bluestocking Society? Were these women brave to organize their meetings, trying to prove their points? Have they ever had a chance to fully succeed in their actions? Have they succeeded? Or maybe no matter if Bluestockings existed or not, women would still gain independence in today’s world? Was this society relevant at all?

Please comment and let me know what you think!


More about how the name of the group was created:

More info about Bluestockings:

Postat av: Hanna

I think the women were brave to start these meetings. Maybe we would have had the society we have today without these meetings, but they were a very good way to get here.

Very nice article Kamila!

2011-04-06 @ 11:34:58
Postat av: Lia

Very good article!

I think that today it might have seem a bit silly if people would arrange meetings just so that women could discuss things with men, as it's hard to remember that women have not always been allowed to speak to men and to have opinions about everything. I think that the women were very brave, just as Hanna said, and that they were probably one reason, however it might have been a quite small reason, that women are as free as we are today and allowed to speak their mind -with men as well!

2011-04-06 @ 12:12:33
Postat av: Kajsa

As always a very nice article from you Kamila!

The women were very brave to hold the meetings and it was brave that they held them in public. It is also brave that they dared to speak their mind in a time when that wasn't common for women to do.

2011-04-15 @ 11:48:33

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