Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Alone of All Her Sex: (Con)textualizing the Female Warrior in Medieval and Early Modern Iberia


Modern Languages & Literatures


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Date Range



In this paper I will examine the representation of the female warrior in literary and popular works from Medieval and Early Modern Iberia. Although I will begin with the Amazons, my main focus will include those individual women, such as the Queens Urraca and Isabel I and those who fought for them, María Pérez de Villanañe known as the Varona de Castilla and Antona García, whose image as warriors found its way into the popular imagination and became incorporated into the oral tradition of the Spanish ballad known as the romancero, of the Doncella Guerrera as well as into legends and dramas of Early Modern Spain. They fall under the category of the mujer varonil (manly woman)popularized in Spanish Golden Age dramas. The last female warrior I will treat, also a historical woman, Catalina Erauso, known as the Monja Alférez (Lieutenant Nun), fought as a Spanish soldier in the Americas.

Conference Name

47th International Congress on Medieval Studies

Conference Location

Kalamazoo, Michigan

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