Containing essays from leading and recent scholars in Peninsular and colonial studies, this volume offers entirely new research on women's acquisition and practice of literacy, on conventual literacy, and on the cultural representations of women's literacy. Together the essays reveal the surprisingly broad range of pedagogical methods and learning experiences undergone by early modern women in Spain and the New World.
Focusing on the pedagogical experiences in Spain, New Spain (present-day Mexico), and New Granada (Colombia) of such well-known writers as Saint Teresa of Ávila, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and María de Zayas, as well as of lesser-known noble women and writers, and of nuns in the Spanish peninsula and the New World, the essays contribute significantly to the study of gendered literacy by investigating the ways in which women—religious and secular, aristocratic and plebeian—became familiarized with the written word, not only by means of the education received but through visual art, drama, and literary culture.
Contributors to this collection explore the abundant writings by early modern women to disclose the extent of their participation in the culture of Spain and the New World. They investigate how women—playwrights, poets, novelists, and nuns— applied their education both to promote literature and to challenge the male-dominated hierarchy of church and state. Moreover, they shed light on how women whose writings were not considered literary also took part in the gendering of Hispanic culture through letters and autobiographies, among other means, and on how that same culture depicted women's education in the visual arts and the literature of the period.
About the Author
Anne J. Cruz is Professor of Spanish and Cooper Fellow, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, University of Miami, USA. Rosilie Hernández is Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of Illinois at Chicago, USA.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction, Anne J. Cruz; Part 1 The Practices of Women's Literacy: Women's reading habits: book dedications to female patrons in early modern Spain, Nieves Baranda Leturio; Reading over men's shoulders: noblewomen's libraries and reading practices, Anne J. Cruz; From mother to daughter: educational lineage in the correspondence between the Countess of Palamós and Estefaniá de Requesens, Montserrat Pérez-Toribio; The education, books, and reading habits of Ana de Mendoza y de la Cerda, Princess of Éboli (1540–1592), Trevor J. Dadson. Part 2 Conventual Literacy in Spain and the New World: Wondrous words: miraculous literacy and real literacy in the convents of early modern Spain, Darcy R. Donahue; 'Let your women keep silence': the Pauline dictum and women's education, Elizabeth Teresa Howe; Women's literacy and masculine authority: the case of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz and Antonio Núñez de Miranda, Stephanie L. Kirk; Convent education in Nueva Granada: white and black, or tonalities of gray?, Clara E. Herrera. Part 3 Representing Women's Literacy in Art and Literature: Learning through love in Lope de Vega's drama, Adrienne L. Martín; Ana Caro and the literary academies of 17th-century Spain, Alicia R. Zuese; María de Zayas, or memory chains and the education of a learned woman, Yolanda Gamboa-Tusquets; The politics of exemplarity: Biblical women and the education of the Spanish lady in Martín Carillo, Sebastián de Herrera Barnuevo, and María de Guevara, Rosilie Hernández; Learning at her mother's knee? St Anne, the Virgin Mary, and the iconography of women's literacy, Emilie L. Bergmann; Index.