Tuesday, November 4, 2014

History of Women in Catalonia

In the histories of mankind, women usually do not appear anywhere even though they have always played a central part in human societies. This approach is no longer in fashion, and in Catalonia, women’s history is part of the history of our people.

History of Women in Catalonia - Part 1

Origins of the Catalan nation, when it was an administrative and governmental part of the Carolingian Empire.


1. Duoda (9th century): Learned woman who knew Latin, Greek and Arabic. Since 824 she was married to Bernard of Septimània, Count of Barcelona, ​u8203 Toulouse, and Carcassonne. She wrote a handbook of religious and moral advice for her eldest son William, who was thirteen when he was separated from his mother and was taken hostage by his father’s enemies.
2. Ermessenda of Carcassone (972/975-1058): Daughter of Roger I of Carcassonne and Adelaide Gavaldà, wife of the Count of Barcelona Ramon Borrell in the year 933. She experienced the death of her husband and her son Ramon Berenguer I, and so was countess and co-governor twice.
Ermessenda accompanied her husband on several read more...


History of Women in Catalonia - Part 2

Some years went by since the creation of the county of Barcelona to the creation of Crown of Aragon—or Catalan-Aragonese Crown. The unification involved a group of kingdoms and counties. The Catalan-Aragonese Crown is a dynastic union. Ramon Berenger wore a coat of arms with one side as count of Barcelona, and the other as king of Aragon. This union allowed everyone to preserve their internal independence. This agreed union preserved the identity of each of its parts thus allowing the territorial integrity as well as the continuity of the laws, customs, and institutions of each of the realms. The Crown of Aragon was a political entity with equal powers with Castile. 

1. Almodis de la Marca (1020-1071): daughter of counts; she married in 1035 and divorced in 1040 with a son. Later on she married again and had four more children. By 1053 her second marriage broke up, and in 1054 she took a fidelity oath to Ramon Berenguer I. The andalusian geographer al-Bakri narrates that the former marriage led them to be excommunicated by the Pope under the encouragement of Blanca d’Empúries read more....

History of Women in Catalonia Part 3

Dolors Monserdà i Vidal
The study of women’s history, like that of men, shows that there are countless women and men who seem to be of little importance, but who represent society at large—beyond all the feats by counts, kings, countesses, and queens. Over the years, the economic and social influence, and therefore the political influence of this majority was reflected in women from the high and low bourgeoisie and also to those from the working class. 

1. Dolors Monserdà i Vidal (1845-1919)

 Journalist and feminist; her pen name was DM i Macià, which was her last name before getting married. Her feminism was based on social Catholicism. She came from a wealthy, ideologically conservative family. She did not proposed a change in the patriarchal society or gender model, but rather based it on the defense of traditional Catalan values ​​and read more...

History of Women in Catalonia - Part 4

Women who come from middle class and working class families do not have the advantages of those who come from the high bourgeois class. Feminist activism, for the last ones, could be just considered an eccentricity, but not so for those other women, since their feminism and ideological thinking surely implied for them many more difficulties, on top of the usual ones for all women at that time. 

1. Teresa Claramunt i Creus (1862-1931) was a leader of the working-class movement due to her pro-union activism. She was also a notorious feminist. From an early age she worked in a textile factory in Sabadell. In 1883 she played an active role in the seven-week strike that took place in Sabadell in order to demand better salary and working conditions. She also took part in Monti Tognetti’s anticlerical league. In 1887, as a representative of the textile workers, she attended the Regional Catalan Congress, held in Barcelona, that was organized by the Spanish Workers Federation. She was arrested and placed in isolation confinement several times between 1893 and 1911. 

She wrote for several working-class outlets (Els desheretats, El productor, Bandera social, among others) and also wrote La dona (The Woman, 1905) in which she reflected on the situation of women due to prerogatives held by men read more...



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