Isabel Morant defends the talent of women in the series ‘Women and Literature’ at La Nau

  • May 3rd, 2017
Isabel Morant

‘En defensa del talento de las mujeres. Literatura e Ilustración’ is the title of the conference that will be given by the full university professor Isabel Morant on Wednesday 3 May at 19:00h in the Aula Magna of the Cultural Centre La Nau. The series of conferences, which was opened with a conference by Mónica Oltra, is carried out in 11 sessions until January 2018.

The series ‘Women and Literature’ is organised by the Valencian Academy for Language and the UV with the aim of highlighting the women’s contribution to literature, history, education and other disciplines.

Isabel Morant will explain how a new debate about women and sex differences is produced within a context of social change.
Isabel Morant is a full university professor of Modern and Contemporary History at the Universitat de València. She is the pioneer of the studies about the history of women and participated in the creation of a historiography which began to develop from the 80s onwards in Europe and America. At the same time, she promoted the creation of new subjects that started to be taught in the courses of the faculties of History in the 90s. 

In the conference, Isabel Morant will explain that the history of women has been focused on emphasising the presence and participation of women in the construction of knowledge and culture throughout the different periods in history. In this line, the conference is within the context of the Enlightment and Liberalism, between the 17th and 19th centuries in order to demonstrate how the speech of sex differences is made. The contributions to philosophy, literature, medicine and political and moral science, which are taken as a reference, help to reveal the diversity of the ideas and the contrast between the thought stablished and the intellectual and political practices of women. 
Isabel Morant will put the emphasis on the biographies of women who, such as Josefa Amar Borbón and Pardo Bazán, built a critical thinking and a way of life according to the ideas of liberty, equality and progress based on a mix of feminism and radical thinking.

Isabel Morant has been the first women at the Office of the Vice-Principal of the Universitat de València in the first government elected democratically by the Faculty meeting in 1984. As vice-principal for University Extension and Linguistic Normalisation, she created the basis to make visible the works of the university community, so she opened her knowledge to the Valencian society. It is also important to highlight the creation of the Universitat d’Estiu in Gandia in 1987 because she was the director from 1994 to 2000. She also encouraged the public use of Valencian language. 

She was the prime mover and director of the collection ‘Feminisims’ in 1991. It was a joint editorial project of the Universitat de València and the Editorial Cátedra, with the support of the Institute for Women in Madrid and had the aim of making viable and visible the researches about disparities and sex differences, accentuated by the feminism in the 70s. Once silence barriers and academic indifference have been overcome, the studies about women in the 80s were at their peak at the international level. Those studies seemed to demand a collection that identified them and could be useful to create the demand of a public who was increasingly interested in the knowledge of the issues addressed in the texts of the collection. 

The 126 titles of ‘Feminisms’ published regularly during 30 years prove the need and strength of a collection. Their books are well-known and used beyond the academic environment, in Spain and the Ibero-American Spanish-speaking countries (including the USA). The testimonies of the lecturers, women, professors, students and professionals of different disciplines, show their esteem for a collection involved in the dissemination of a knowledge necessary for the construction of fair, free and equal social and relational models. 

She has also conducted ‘Historia de las Mujeres en España y América Latina’, published by the Editorial Cátedra between 2005 and 2006. The work, distributed in four volumes and 4,000 pages, was an ambitious project and pioneer of its genre. It is emphasised in this work the progress of the historiographic production that we called history of women and gender. It was produced on both sides of the Atlantic, and a new story is offered in the reference country. This is important for its discoveries about women historical agency and the construction of a society divided in genres. On the other hand, this edition has received a positive response from the international community. So, it is possible to make visible a historiography written in Spanish that was little known in other academic environments in Europe and USA.  

Her work has been awarded by the FECYT in 2007 for her work in the dissemination of the knowledge about equality.

The series of conferences ‘Women and Literature’ takes place at Aula Magna of the Cultural Centre La Nau and is composed of 11 conferences which are given from January 2017 to January 2018. Admission is free and limited to the capacity of the hall.

La Nau’s Aula Magna will welcome in the next months the presence of women such as Isabel Morant (Universitat de València), Carmen Alfaro (Universitat de València), Ana Aguado (Universitat de València), Capitolina Díaz (Universitat de València), Emilia Serra (Universitat de València), Carmen Agulló (Universitat de València) and Verònica Cantó (AVL), who will close the series and will end up these cultural acts dedicated to Sister Isabel de Villena, Writer of the Year, organised by the Valencian Language Academy.

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