The Debate on the Nature, Role and Influence of Woman in Eighteenth-Century Spain

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Based on an exhaustive examination of archival sources which revealed much new material, this volume presents a thorough and incisive review of the range of opinions found in pamphlets and periodicals from the beginning of the debate to its decline in the first years of the nineteenth century. Highlighting evolutionary stages in the discussion, it reveals and clarifies the attitudes and assumptions which underpin the various essays and places the debate on woman within the context of the social, political and intellectual background of eighteenth-century Spain. Topics in the archival sources included education, marriage, work, population, charity, the arts, and prostitution.


"This monograph is an important contribution to our understanding of representations of gender in Spain's eighteenth century. . . . Her project of intellectual history provides gracefully-written summary characterizations of essays that had women as their topic, with the purpose of tracing the development of ideas about women from the seventeenth to the nineteenth century." - Dieciocho

"Ms. Kitts' book amply demonstrates that 'Recent publications on women and the periodical press persist in the myth that it was not until well into the nineteenth century that periodicals appeared aimed explicitly at a female readership' and manages to destroy that myth with facts, clear writing, ample documentation (the notes are very useful) and judicious analyses of many texts on the subject. . . . Kitts is working in one of the most exciting areas for research these days - the Spanish eighteenth century - where textual scholarship, feminist theory and literary history seem to be converging (clashing?)." - Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

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