This article re-thinks the mechanisms through which a “proto-feminist” stance could be enunciated in early modern Spain, focusing on Sor María de Ágreda as a paradigmatic example. I show how Sor María’s deeply held pro-imperial, racist, essentialist ideas across her writings allowed her to achieve the royal and Church support that ended up protecting the proto-feminist La mística ciudad de Dios, and how those alignments changed after her death. I suggest that scholars of the early modern period can best serve feminism in the present through a frank study of the ways in which women appealed to power in the past.

The text of this article is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.