I received this query from Sandrine Berges (who blogs at Feminist History of Philosophy):
I’m trying to trace a quote I found in Sophie de Grouchy’s Lettres sur la sympathie, a piece she wrote as a comment on her translation of Smith’s TMA in 1798. There’s not much written about her, and my quebecois edition of the letters is missing the relevant page (dodgy university press).
The quote is this:
“Les fautes des femmes sont l’ouvrage des hommes, comme les vices des peuples sont le crime de leurs tyrans” (The faults of women are the work of men, just as the vices of a people are the crime of their tyrant) – VII Letter on Sympathy.
She attributes it to a philosopher ‘even more wise than famous’. I suspect Voltaire but cannot trace it.
If any readers have any thoughts or leads, please share them in the comments here.