Women and Feminism in 20th Century Spain (MLS3037)

StaffProfessor Nuria Capdevila-Arguelles - Convenor
Dr Isabel Santafe - Convenor
Credit Value15
ECTS Value7.5
NQF Level6
Pre-requisitesMLS2001 or equivalent
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks;

Module aims

Women's role in Spanish society has changed rapidly, juggling tradition and modernity in a unique way. This module aims to:

  • Understand the many discourses on female identity that exist and conflict within contemporary Spanish society in relation to the last hundred years of Spanish politics and history
  • Analyse the extent to which this history has generated a distinctively Spanish brand of feminism
  • Analyse the productivity of key concepts in gender theory, such as representation, subjectivity and repression.
  • Examine gender in relation to body and psyche, sex and sexuality, the individual and the social

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Demonstrate detailed knowledge of relevant feminist thought and works and an understanding of their significance in the broader historical / literary / cultural context in which they were produced

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 2. After initial input from the course tutor, apply and evaluate critical approaches to the material under analysis independently
  • 3. Argue at length and in detail about an aspect of the topic, supporting the argument with evidence from the texts and with opinions from secondary literature
  • 4. Use a range of critical terminology, applying it to independently researched material as well as to material introduced by the course tutor
  • 5. Access and use critically printed and, where appropriate, electronic learning resources identified as useful by the course tutor(s); find independently and evaluate critically other relevant resources
  • 6. Analyse Spanish texts in a variety of genres and styles, showing awareness of their relation to the social, historical and generic context in which they were written, and present the results orally and in writing

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 7. Undertake independent research on the basis of a taught course
  • 8. Manage own learning time and learning activities with minimal guidance from course tutor(s)
  • 9. Present information and arguments on a designated or negotiated topic to a group of listeners and respond to questions and responses from the group
  • 10. Adopt a critical approach to the selection and organisation of a large body of material in order to produce, to a deadline, a written or oral argument of some complexity
  • 11. Using bibliographical material provided, select, plan and carry out a programme of study leading to an essay on a chosen topic, to a specified length and deadline or to an examination

Syllabus plan

Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that it will cover some or all of the following topics:

  • Introduction. The Origins of the Women's Liberation Movement. Europe and Spain
  • La Segunda República (1931-1936)
  • La guerra civil, Women at war (1936-39)
  • Mujer y franquismo (1939-1975)
  • Reading Gender
  • Representations of women during the transition to democracy
  • Representations of women in the new millennium: CartasVivas

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching5Lecture
Scheduled Learning and Teaching11Seminar
Guided Independent Study134Private study

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Video Presentation or podcast5 minutes per group of 4-5 students1, 2, 5-8, 10Written and/or oral with an opportunity to discuss individual development and contribution

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Creative video and script (group task)305 minutes per group of 4-5 students1-2, 5-8, 10Written (and oral on request)
Translation of script (group task)1075-100 words per student1-2, 5, 7-8Written (and oral on request)
Examination 601 hour 15 minutes1-11Written (and oral on request)

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Creative video and script (group task)Creative script and critical contextualisation and engagement (individual), 100 words of script and 800 words critical piece1-2, 5-8, 10Referral/Deferral period
Translation of script (group task)Translation of section of script (individual). 100 words1-2, 5, 7-8Referral/Deferral period
Individual essay (incl. reflection)Individual essay (incl. reflection), 1,800 words1-11Referral/Deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

A selection of basic texts will be provided via ELE. Extra basic reading: Nada by Carmen Laforet and La secreta guerra de los sexos by Maria Campo Alange.

Please familiarise yourselves with http://cartasvivas.org/

Other texts:

  • Aguado, A. M. Capel, R. M.. et al. (eds.) (1994): Textos para la historia de las mujeres en España. Cátedra.
  • Amat, Nuria (2000): El siglo de las mujeres. Ediciones del bronce.
  • Arenal, Concepción (1974): La emancipación de la mujer en España. Júcar.
  • Campoamor, Clara, El voto femenino y yo . Madrid: horas y HORAS.
  • Capdevila-Argüelles, Nuria (2008): Autoras inciertas. Voces olvidadas de nuestro feminismo . Madrid: horas y HORAS.
  • de la Fuente, Inmaculada (2002): Mujeres de la posguerra . Planeta.
  • Freixas, Laura (ed.) (2000): Ser mujer . Ediciones Temas de hoy.
  • Gamble, Sarah (1999): The Routledge Critical Dictionary of Feminism and Postfeminism . Routledge
  • Mangini, Shirley (2001): Las modernas de Madrid . Península
  • Mangini, Shirley (1995) Memories of resistance : Women's voices from the Spanish Civil War . Yale U.P
  • Jones, Anny B. (1997): Women in Contemporary Spain . Manchester University Press.
  • Martín Gaite, Carmen (1994, 1987): Usos amorosos de la posguerra española. Colección Compactos. Anagrama
  • Montero R. (1995): ‘Political Transition and Cultural Democracy: Coping with the Speed of Change’ (pp.315-320) &‘The Silent Revolution: The Social and Cultural Advances of Women in Democratic Spain’ (pp. 381-385) in Graham, H. & Labanyi, J. (eds.) (1995): Spanish Cultural Studies. An Introduction. The Struggle for Modernity . O.U.P.
  • Oyarzabal, Isabel. Mujer, voto y libertad. Edicion de Amparo Quiles Faz, Renacimiento.
  • Preston, Paul (2001): Palomas de guerra . Plaza & Janés Editores. English version, Harper Collins.
  • Scanlon, Geraldine M. (1976): La polémica feminista en la España contemporánea (1868-1974) . Siglo XXI de España editores.

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date