Bachelor of Arts
School or Department
Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures
Faculty Mentor Department
Modern and Classical Languages
Zayas, Spanish, beauty, misfortune, Golden Age, literature
Arts and Humanities | Spanish Literature
The age-old question of what beauty is has been a common discussion among artists and philosophers for centuries. Maria de Zayas, a 17th century Spanish novelist mostly known for her novella collections Amorous and Exemplary Novels (1637) and The Disenchantments of Love (1647), describes violence and deception of beautiful women at the hands of men. In this paper, I will explore Zayas’s motives for all the female heroines being beautiful and how this all relates to the connection between beauty and misfortune that is seen throughout her works as well as many other pieces of literature. By comparing Zayas’s novellas with traditional fairy tales and Greek and Roman mythology we will understand how women were traditionally viewed as dual natured, their status and value during 17th century Spain, and the traditional western narrative of blaming female victims rather than the male perpetrator. This literary exploration will emphasize the lack of control men had around “beautiful” women and how men felt a sense of entitlement and ownership over women during the 17th century.
Honors College Research Project
GLI Capstone Project
Sviatko, Clarise Ann, "The Beauty and the Beast: Beauty and Misfortune in Maria de Zayas’s Novellas" (2023). Undergraduate Theses, Professional Papers, and Capstone Artifacts. 426.
© Copyright 2023 Clarise Ann Sviatko