Symposium highlights 18th century Spanish cultural legacy

Posted by Jayme Blaschke
University News Service
March 8, 2007

Texas State University-San Marcos will host an interdisciplinary symposium on the cultural legacy of the Spanish 18th century April 10, an event expected to draw participants from as far away as the University of Valencia in Spain.

“Gender and Enlightenment: The Eighteenth Century Debate and Its Legacy” is organized by the Texas State Department of Modern Languages, and will also feature participants from the University of Texas at Austin and the Texas State departments of modern languages, English, history, philosophy and music. Co-sponsors include the College of Liberal Arts, the Graduate College, the Center for Multicultural and Gender Studies, the Mitte Honors Program and the Texas State Parents Association. The conference has been made possible by matching funds from the Program for Cultural Cooperation between Spain’s Ministry of Culture and United States Universities.

The symposium is free and open to the public.

The keynote speaker will be Mónica Bolufer Peruga, a cultural historian from the University of Valencia in Spain, who will deliver a lecture on “Gender and Theories of Civilization in Travel Narratives of Spain,” at 9 a.m. Bolufer's research has concentrated on women in 18th-century Spain--for example, how women have been represented in the Enlightenment, their modes of writing and speaking, their concepts of intimacy, their lives in the private and public spheres, the process of modernization in Spain and Spain’s cultural relationship to other European societies.  Bolufer has published numerous books and articles internationally on gender and the Spanish 18th century.

Other participants’ papers will focus on gender and the legacy of the Spanish 18th century as reflected in marriage, music, drama, painting, poetry and philosophy.

“The symposium will foster interdisciplinary communication and collaboration among the academic community and students on research on gender and 18th century history and culture,” said Catherine Jaffe, professor of modern languages and symposium organizer. “It will also increase awareness of the Hispanic tradition in an area of broad concern for understanding trans-Atlantic history and cultural relationships: the Enlightenment and its contribution to current debates on the meaning of gender and women's role in society.”

More information is available by contacting the symposium’s organizer, Catherine Jaffe, at or (512) 245-2492.