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    Posted: 06-Sep-2007 at 22:36

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz (1648-1695) was a Mexican nun of colonial times who is considered one of the first feminist on history.

She was a intellectual and writer, and published prose, theatre and lot of poetry, both mystical and mundane. And she wrote a fantastic poem that show all the misery of half humanity: men (including myself LOL)
 
Her poem is called foolish men, that I attach in bilingual Spanish/English Version. At the end of this post I put her bio.
 
 
 
FOOLISH MEN
 
Juana Ines de la cruz
Hombres necios que acusáis
a la mujer sin razón,
sin ver que sois la ocasión
de lo mismo que culpáis:
Foolish men, you accuse
woman without reason,
without seeing that you create
exactly that for which you blame them
Parecer quiere el denuedo
de vuestro parecer loco,
al niño que pone el coco
y luego le tiene miedo.
Your persistent stupidity
Seems most like
the boy who calls out the bogeyman
and afterwards is afraid
¿Que humor puede ser más raro
que el que, falto de consejo,
él mismo empaña el espejo,
y siente que no esté claro?
What kind of character could be weirder
than one who cluelessly
steams up the mirror himself
and then regrets that it's not clear?
Con el favor y el desdén
tenéis condición igual,
quejándoos, si os tratan mal,
burlándoos, si os quieren bien
With favor and disdain
you hold both in the same position:
you complain about them if they treat you badly; you mock them if they love you well.
Siempre tan necios andáis
que, con desigual nivel,
a una culpáis por cruel
y a otra por fácil culpáis.
You're always so stubbornly mulish
that, with an unbalanced scale,
you blame one woman for being cruel,
and the other for being easy.
Pues ¿para qué os espantáis
de la culpa que tenéis?
Queredlas cual las hacéis
o hacedlas cual las buscáis.
So why are you so afraid to take the blame you deserve? Love them just as you have made them, or make them as you would want to find them
 
 
 

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz (1648-1695)


Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz is best known as a major Baroque literary figure of Mexico. However, her insatiable desire to understand everything around her, coupled with her studies in classical and medieval philosophy and her fierce assertion of a woman's right to fully participate in scholastic inquiry mark her as a philosopher as well. According to Mary Morkovsky, Sor Juana's philosophical poetry, (Sueno) indicates a coherent world view, and her critique of the Jesuit sermon reveals her mastery of logic. In addition, in the same decade that England's Mary Astell wrote her argument for the education of women, A Serious Proposal To The Ladies...,in Mexico, Sor Juana was hotly defending a woman's right to an education and intellectual prowess in Reply to Sor Philothea .

Oh, how much harm would be avoided in our country if older women were as learned as Laeta and knew how to teach in the way Saint Paul and my Father Saint Jerome direct! Instead of which, if fathers wish to educate their daughters beyond what is customary, for want of trained older women and on account of the extreme negligence which has become women's sad lot, since well-educated older women are unavailable, they are obliged to bring in men teachers to give instruction...As a result of this, many fathers prefer leaving their daughters in a barbaric, uncultivated state to exposing them to an evident danger such a familiarity with men breeds.


Sor Juana Timeline

1648 November, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz de Asbaje y Ramirez is born in the village of San Miguel Mepantla near Mexico City. She is the illegitimate child of a Spanish Captain, Pedro Manuel de Asbaje and Isabe Ramirez. The father, according to all accounts, is absent from her life. She is baptized December 2 when she is registered on the Church rolls as "a daughter of the Church" because her parents were not married. She is raised in the country at the home of her maternal grandfather.
1651 (aprox.) At the age of three, Sor Juana follows her sister to a school for "amigas" (girls) and coaxes the teacher into teaching her to read. She then turns to her grandfather's library and is unstoppable in her quest of learning through study of his books.
1654-58. Sor Juana hears of the university in Mexico City and begs her mother to send her there disguised as a boy. Her mother refuses, so Sor Juana continues to conte nt herself with her grandfather's library. She writes a dramatic poem for the Eucharist and inflicts punishments on herself for not learning fast enough. She receives twenty Latin grammar lessons which she forces herself to learn well by cutting her hai r off everytime she doesn't learn a certain point. She later said, in her Reply to Sor Philothea, "It turned out that the hair grew quickly and I learned slowly. As a result, I cut off the hair in punishment for my head's ignorance, for it didn't seem right to me that a head so naked of knowledge should be dressed up with hair. For knowledge is a more desirable adornment." (Flynn, 15)
1659 (aprox.) Sor Juana is sent to live with her aunt in Mexico City. By this time, Sor Juana's knowledge and memory is amazing and she becomes known as a prodigy.
1664. A new viceregal couple, Antonio Sebastian de Toledo, Marquis de Mancera, and Leonor Carreto arrive in Mexico City. They hear of Sor Juana and she is presented a t their court. Vicereine Leonor takes the sixteen year-old girl under her wing as a maid-in-waiting. Sor Juana spends five years in the court of the viceregal couple. She continues to develop intellectually and socially. The Marquis later recounted th at he tested Sor Juana's knowledge with a barrage of learned men, theologians, philosophers, mathematicians, historians, poets, and other specialists; the ease with which she answered their questions and argued her points put to rest once and for all her intellectual brilliance. Also during this time, she writes numerous poems and sonnets, many for funerary or celebratory occasions.
1667 14 August, Sor Juana enters the Convent of the Discalced Carmelites of St. Joseph. She finds the reformed rule of this order too strict and leaves the Convent November 18 of the same year.
1669 24 February, Sor Juana enters the Convent of the Order of St. Jerome where she remains until her death. In his forward to A Sor Juana Anthology, Octavio Paz notes that the life of this Convent was not austere. The nuns had private living quarters, often occupying two floors, and complete with kitchens, baths and parlors. Many of the nuns, including Sor Juana, had servants. This lifestyle allows Sor Jua na to amass her own library, to write, correspond, study, and hold intellectual court with her friends. Her duties at the Convent include attendance of divine offices, observance of canonical hours, and teaching girls musical and dramatic activities. Th e viceregal couple continue to protect Sor Juana from detractors and are regular visitors to her "salon". (p.4-6)
1673. The viceregal term of the Marquis and Marquise de Mancera ends. Sor Juana remains on good terms with the viceregal court, now headed by Archbishop Friar Payo Enr iques de Ribera, although he does not attend her intellectual gatherings as frequently.
1676-91. Sor Juana writes carols for the Cathedrals of Mexico, Puebla, and Oaxaca.
1680. Friar Payo is succeeded by the Marquis de la Laguna, and his wife Maria Luisa, Countess de Paredes. Sor Juana and Maria are close in age and soon become close fr iends. Maria is portrayed in Sor Juana's poetry of this period as Phyllis and Lysis. She encourages and supports Sor Juana to write.
1683. Sor Juana writes the secular play, The Trials of a Noble House.
1688. The Marquis and Marquise de la Laguna depart for Spain. Sor Juana no longer has noble protection. Her superior, prelate, Francisco Aguiar y Seijas, Archbishop o f Mexico is, according to Paz, "fiercely misogynistic and strongly opposed to secular drama." Trouble begins to brew for Sor Juana's intellectual freedom. (Anth. p7)
1689. Sor Juana writes another secular play, Love, the Greater Labyrinth. Marquise de la Laguna has an anthology of Sor Juana's poetry published in Spain under the title The Overflowing of the Castalian Spring, by the Tenth Muse of Mexico. Sor Juana also writes a sacramental play, The Divine Narcissus at the Marquise's request.
1690 1690. In a discussion with her long-time friend, the Bishop of Puebla, Sor Juana gives a critique of a famous sermon given forty years earlier by the eminent Por tuguese Jesuit, Antonio de Vieira. The Bishop is impressed with her argument and requests her to put them in writing. He then, without Sor Juana's knowledge publishes the writing Missive Worthy of Athena. However, he also includes a letter of hi s own admonishing Sor Juana for her intellectualism under the pen name Sor Philothea de la Cruz. It is evident that the Bishop was not the friend Sor Juana thought him, since this left her open to attack from the misogynist Archbishop.
1691 1 March, Sor Juana publishes Reply to Sor Philothea. In it, she recounts her intellectual history, defends herself and defends women's rights to education . Pressure on her to turn from worldly intellectualism is increased.
1693. Sor Juana repents of "having lived so long without religion in a religious community." Her pen is silenced.
1695 17 April, Sor Juana dies of the plague after caring for her sick sisters.
 


Edited by pinguin - 06-Sep-2007 at 22:38
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheARRGH Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 13:22
Kinda cool....

Then again, being male, my ego is now officially squashed.

..I'm going to have to go pursue and devour some small mammal to assuage my low self-esteem....>sob<

nah, not really.
Who is the great dragon whom the spirit will no longer call lord and god? "Thou shalt" is the name of the great dragon. But the spirit of the lion says, "I will." - Nietzsche

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 15:55
Originally posted by TheARRGH TheARRGH wrote:

Kinda cool....

Then again, being male, my ego is now officially squashed.
...
 
Tell me about it. I got a mom, a wife and a daughter... my ego is worst ConfusedLOLLOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TheARRGH Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 16:46
I have two older sisters. ANy ego I had was squeezed into nothingness a looong time ago.
Who is the great dragon whom the spirit will no longer call lord and god? "Thou shalt" is the name of the great dragon. But the spirit of the lion says, "I will." - Nietzsche

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pekau Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 18:06

Was this released in public (In her time - that is)?

     
   
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Sep-2007 at 18:11
Originally posted by pekau pekau wrote:

Was this released in public (In her time - that is)?
 
Yes, it was. She was very famous on her time. A brave woman and an extraordinary poet in Spanish letters. She is remember mainly as a master of the "Golden Century" of Spanish arts. Outstanding merit, given she was a woman and a daughter of the Americas.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bilal_ali_2000 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Sep-2007 at 02:16
Oh man it really tells you that men are the same all over the world. The things that she accuses spanish men of are the accusations which Pakistani men accuse women of.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Sep-2007 at 09:25
??
 
Well, the reaction she had and that reflected in the poem is very common if we undestand western societies where women are classified in two groups: saints and prostitutes.
 
In the Spanish culture women has always been considerated delicated beings that deserve respect, and also has been considered a human being like men. No superior and not inferior. There is even a devotion for mothers and "good women", but to achieve that women has to belong to the cathegory of "saints"... In legal mothers, women were considered "second in command" with respect to theirs husbands in the past, but never Spanish society forced women to shameful behavoirs like covering the face up or using a gurka.
 
In the Spanish culture (of the past at least) if a woman have a bad reputation she will be the one that suffers the humilliation (not the family). And the punishement is usually done by isolating the women, not speaking to her and parents that consider their daughter as if she had died, and things like that. (That's not the case in the Muslim world where men sometimes killed women to save the reputation of the family. That's unbelievable weird seeing from a western mind)
 
Juana Ines de la Cruz, just recall men that if women lost her "honour" it is the fault of men as much as women! And that men like to play with women and afterwords evade responsability. (modern, isn't?)
 
Very smart woman, indeed. That's why we remember her.
 
Pinguin
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lenara Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27-Mar-2008 at 17:37
Do you have a reference for your bio on Sor Juana? I believe that your information is correct but I want to read more on her!
 
Thanks.


Edited by Lenara - 27-Mar-2008 at 17:37
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28-Mar-2008 at 03:30

Hello,

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz is considered one of the most outstanding writers in Spanish of all times. She was Mexican and never left Mexico, however she is considered one of the main writers of the Golden Age of Spanish literature.
Sor%20Juana%20Ines%20de%20la%20Cruz
You can find more about her on here.
 
 
Besides, in any public library perhaps you would find books about her. This book I found in Amazon with her poems.
 
 
The%20Answer%20/%20La%20Respuesta,%20Including%20a%20Selection%20of%20Poems%20%28A%20Feminist%20Press%20Sourcebook%29
 
"He who attempts to count the stars, not even knowing how to count the knots of the 'quipus'(counting string), ought to be held in derision."

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