The Forum

Sister Juana, a great mind of Mexico

Sister Juana Ines de la Cruz is celebrated today as one of the finest poets in the history of Mexico. She was not just a creative and intellectual force but also a campaigner for women’s education and someone not afraid to challenge male hypocrisy. The colonial 17th-century society in which she lived was very patriarchal so, not surprisingly, her views brought her into conflict with the men in power.

Rajan Datar looks at key episodes in Sister Juana’s life and examines the passion and ingenuity in her poetry and plays with the help of Alicia Gaspar de Alba, Professor at University of California Los Angeles and a writer whose novels include Sor Juana’s Second Dream; Dr. Amy Fuller, Senior Lecturer at Nottingham Trent University, specialist in early modern Spain and Mexico and author of Between Two Worlds, a monograph on Sister Juana's plays; and Rosa Perelmuter, Professor of Romance Studies at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The reader is Pepa Duarte.

[Image: A painting of Sister Juana by the Mexican artist Miguel Cabrera (1695-1768). Credit: DeAgostini/Getty Images]

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