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Revisiting the Seventeenth-Century Republic of Letters

Project description

Women’s writing from 17th century Spain

Women’s impact on the 17th century literary production scene has attracted the interest of researchers for years, but there is still much to study and understand. There are many unanswered questions relating to women’s role in the printing process during this period. Existing research has yet to investigate possible interconnections between writing and publishing, as well as the role gender played. The EU-funded REVERE project will investigate the transnational aspects of women’s participation in authorship and publishing in early modern Spain. The project will analyse the processes that allowed increased women’s participation in professional writing during this period. It will offer a better understanding of women’s activity in the court and the monastic world.


Despite the important research available on early modern literary production and patronage by women, chiefly concerning the religious, the view of the marginality of the woman author ('author' understood then as one who wrote de suo and for publication) continues to be pervasive. My project will examine the role of gender in the construction of scholarly and commercial authorship in Spanish and English by elucidating the transnational nature of authorial and editorial practices with print during the commercialization of the literary product in the seventeenth century, thus making an original contribution to book history and gender studies. Extending the investigation of women’s literary careers beyond religion and across geo-linguistic boundaries is imperative, if we want an informed picture of the extent and implications of the mobility of print culture in this period. The awareness of the scarcity of international explorations of the cross-cultural mobility of women’s texts has encouraged some scholars to undertake transnational research in the field, but these studies are still a small minority, and their ambitions never concretely investigate how authorial and editorial practices interact with each other. For the most part, specialists continue to structure their arguments according to theme, period, geography, or language, thereby obscuring broader diachronic trends towards women’s increasing participation in the professional world of authorship. My study will interact with the ongoing MINECO-funded project, ‘Poder, espiritualidad y género (Castilla, 1400-1550): La emergencia de la autoridad femenina en la corte y el convento’, running at UPF ( Investigating the intercultural impact of women’s position as authors through print is in line with the primary objectives of this MINECO project, namely to enhance our knowledge of women’s authority within the court and in the convent in early modern Spain.


Net EU contribution
€ 172 932,48
08002 Barcelona

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Este Cataluña Barcelona
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 172 932,48