We are pleased to announce Deborah Madden's new book Matilde de la Torre: Sex, Socialism and Suffrage in Republican Spain for our Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Cultures series. De la Torre was born in 1884, and thus belonged to the same generation as Nancy Astor (b. 1879) and Jeannette Rankin (b. 1880): they were the first women elected to parliamentary seats in England and the USA, and de la Torre was the first in Spain. Unlike Astor or Rankin, though, De la Torre was a tribune of the left, and was far from being a pillar of the status quo. Spanish politics remains a fairly masculine world even today. There has never been a woman head of government, and though the one woman to serve as deputy, María Teresa Fernández de la Vega, is now Chair of the Council of State, that's something of an emeritus position. Safe to say that De la Torre would not have been satisfied with this progress.
The cover of Deborah's book is an iconic Madrid monument, the bronze Minerva which stands some 58m above the Gran Via, and was raised in 1966. It wasn't a monument to De la Torre — really, it was in imitation of the Acropolis Athena — but perhaps it should have been. De la Torre would, one feels, approve of the militant determination it embodies.
Matilde de la Torre is due out in our Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Cultures series in 2022.