Searching for the writing subject in La vida de la Monja Alférez: autobiografía atribuida a Doña Catalina de Erauso

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The writing subject in the La Vida de la Monja Alférez: Autobiografía atribuida a Doña Catalina de Erauso is a difficult subject to determine because of the apocryphal nature of the text, the impact of multiple authors on the subsequent copies of the work, and the gender changes of the protagonist. There have been many critical approaches implemented to study this text, among them sociological, historical, feminist and formalist. All of these have added invaluable information to the understanding of the text, but few have focused on all of the Erauso entities manifested in the Vida. Further investigation is warranted into the writing subject phenomenon in Early Modern Spain to evaluate the messages that the collective writing subject is imparting. Applying Paul Smith's concept of the writing subject as a psychological collective entity that presents messages to the reader (xxx), the work can be evaluated for the various messages presented by the collective writing subject using the narrator and protagonist. Additionally, an evaluation of the historical Erauso and the history of the text will aid in understanding the various points of entry for other authors, editors, publicists and copyists. Investigating the fields of Early Modern Autobiography, Soldier's Autobiography as well as the the various literary genres which are present in the text will clarify particular scenes that contribute to the development of the protagonist. All of these areas of investigation will allow the messages that the collective writing subject brings to the text to be analyzed. The writing subject of Erauso's life story can also be compared to the writing subjects of female soldier's life stories to establish similarities between the two. Conclusions can be drawn about the nature of the collective writing subject, the importance of gender identity and the messages that the writing subject delivers through a study of the text and an application of the criticism.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Latin American literature, Romance literature