Maria Eugenia Echenique: “The Emancipation of Women”(1876)
When emancipation was given to men, it was also given to women in recognition of the equality of rights, consistent with the principles of nature on which they are founded, that proclaim the identity of soul between men and women. Thus, Argentine women have been emancipated by law for a long time. The code of law that governs us authorizes a widow to defend her rights in court, just as an educated woman can in North America, and like her, we can manage the interests of our children, these rights being the basis for emancipation. What we lack is sufficient education and instruction to make use of them, instruction that North American women have; it is not just recently that we have proclaimed our freedom. To try to question or to oppose women’s emancipation is to oppose something that is almost a fact, it is to attack our laws and destroy the Republic.
So let the debate be there, on the true point where it should be: whether or not it is proper for women to make use of...
Paul Brians, et al., eds. Reading About the World, vol. 2. Harcourt Brace College Publishing, 1999.