In On Liberty, John Stuart Mill advocated individual liberty based on a philosophical concept called utilitarianism, or "the greatest happiness for the greater number". This intellectual tradition rejects natural rights, such as those in Jefferson's Declaration of Independence. Despite beginning with a different theoretical foundation than natural rights proponents, Mill reaches a similar conclusion, that diversity in individual thought and action ultimately benefits society.
Vindication of the Rights of Woman examines the tumultuous life of Mary Wollstonecraft and the social conditions against which she struggled. It explores her call for female independence against the backdrop of 18th-century England, the French Revolution, and the changing role of women. Mary Wollstonecraftt lived the life she advocated, defying accepted customs for female employment, marriage, and family life.