In contemporary times, women have broken down gender barriers in some facets of life (such as education) while still facing discrimination in others (such as the workplace). Most people would agree that women have made great gains since the feminist movements of the 1960s and the women''s suffrage movements of the 19th century but few people would trace successes made in women''s education back to the Middle Ages (500-1500) or the Early Modern Period (1500-1750). History however, as has been demonstrated time and again, is not simply black or white; there is much to be gained from studying the gray areas. This work sheds light on attitudes towards women''s education in the 17th century by providing an in-depth study of the correspondence between the famed philosopher, Rene Descartes and three learned women--Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia, Duchess Margaret Cavendish of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and Queen Christina of Sweden. A thorough analysis of these individuals puts their correspondence in context and allows one to see its effects. This book will prove useful to anyone who is interested in these intriguing historical figures, education, politics, women''s history, or philosophy.