Long regarded as Mary Wollstonecraft's most delightful work, this series of twenty-five letters is quite possibly the perfect fusion of their famous author's personal and intellectual selves. The letters were written to her lover, Gilbert Imlay, who had sent her to the Scan-dinavian countries as his business envoy dur-ing the summer of 1795. She was accompanied by her year-old daughter and a nursemaid on part of the journey, but frequently took side trips on her own. Informed by a wealth of ideas and years of wide reading, the letters combine landscape description, sociological observation, poetic reverie, and personal apostrophe. Never ceasing to observe the members of her own sex, Wollstonecraft is concerned with the plight of Scandinavian women, and expresses her views on child care. The modern reader will be struck by the contemporaneity of her comments on prison reform, capital punishment, property, and government. This first modern edition of the Letters has been lightly edited, increasing its readability while preserving the flavor of the original.
It includes the author's original notes, editorial notes, an introduction, and a selected bibliography, as well as a map of the journey.