Modernist Liberal Nation in Spain Essay

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José Zorrilla’s “Don Juan Tenorio” and Rosario de Acuña’s “El Padre Juan” give a contrasting view of the advancement of a modern liberal nation. “Don Juan Tenorio” outlines a view that is the status quo – a Spanish society that is not interested in modernisation, rather a marginalisation of women and not recognising equal rights. In contrast, Acuña does try to express a point of view that would identify with a liberal society. This essay will discuss three points. Firstly it will outline and explain what exactly a Liberal society and nation actually is. Secondly it will examine Zorrilla’s text and explain through its anti-feminist viewpoint that it does not advance a liberal society. Finally this essay will examine Acuña’s text and explain …show more content…
Therefore she does not have a choice, and therefore wouldn’t be an advancement of a liberal society.

Further on in the text Zorilla is suggesting that the woman is innocent, that she has never experienced the ‘real world’ and therefore should accept it ‘as-is’
“Sois joven, cándida y buena; vivido en el claustro habéis, casi desde que nacisteis” (vv. 1437-39).
As she does not know what the world outside of the confines of her protected state, she does not need to fear it. This would suggest the subjugated role that the female is expected to play – and the Masculine role of taking care of the female is apparent. Furthermore, Abadesa is jealous that Doña Inéz is ‘innocent’, that she does not know what the real world is actually like.
“¡Dichosa mil veces vos! Dichosa, sí, doña Inés, que no conociendo el mundo, no le debéis de temer” (vv. 1445-48).
Therefore, Zorrilla is telling the reader ‘at this point’ in the text that the female doesn’t need to worry about the real world – this should be left to the male, who is ‘expected’ to provide support to the family and protect his family.

Furthermore, as Aldaraca argues, there is a definite contradiction between theory and practice. She argues that the whole idea of an “egalitarian marriage contract” where two individual

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