Cavendish pt. 1 reflection

Prior to our in-class discussion of The Blazing World and “It is Hard to Believe There Are Other Worlds in this World,” I was approaching Cavendish’s work with a focus on the presence of colonialism and imperialism as commentary on European exploration in the Americas during the 17th century. While the argument that The Blazing World satirizes these explorations could be made, our review of Cavendish’s relation to the Royal Society made me reconsider how imperialism is being used in the piece. The idea that the Royal Society and other scholarly fraternities were imperialistic in their control of knowledge and ideologies, coupled with the fact that they had no interest in allowing female participation, makes The Blazing World a stronger criticism of patriarchal academic institutions. When reading the latter half, I plan to focus on power imbalances in isolation rather than within historical context, and pay closer attention to gender roles as they relate to social status.

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