FYI-102-27 From Spain to Istanbul: Piracy and Exile in the Early Modern Mediterranean

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Student Paper

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Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Spanish Literature | Women's Studies

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This paper analyzes a short story by the 17th-century Spanish author María de Zayas. In Her Lover’s Slave, Zayas’s protagonist Isabel Fajardo is raped and decides to transform into a Moorish slave woman in order to pursue her rapist throughout the Mediterranean and avenge her honor. I examine the effect of this transformation on Isabel, a Christian noblewoman who is subject to the restrictive honor code of early modern Spain, as well as the effect on her Spanish audience. I argue that Isabel’s tale sends didactic messages to early modern and contemporary readers, messages that promote solidarity among women and reject rigid gender roles and expectations.


1st Place Winner, Short Analytical Essay, 2017

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.