Thursday, September 20, 2012

Hispanic Heritage Month: Learn About Sor Juana

During Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) we hope you'll take a few minutes to learn about Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz: The First Great Latin American Poet.
It turned out that the hair grew quickly and I learned slowly. As a result, I cut off the hair in punishment for my head’s ignorance, for it didn’t seem right to me that a head so naked of knowledge should be dressed up with hair, for knowledge is a more desirable adornment,
—from The Reply to the Very Illustrious Sor Philotea de la Cruz, written in 1691
"Sor Juana was published in different parts of the Hispanic world during her lifetime and she enjoyed the reputation of being the premiere Baroque poet in New Spain (Mexico), which earned her both praise and vicious misogynistic attacks. Sor Juana was persecuted for being an intellectual and a woman, a nun, and a writer who wrote quite provocatively in the very Christian New Spain of the 1600s."
This background information comes from  Edsitement!, the National Endowment for the Humanities on the web, which your branch may find a rich programming resource. This particular unit provides background information, guiding questions, and two lessons for high school students. They work for adults just as well.

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