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A Female Epic: Memorial da Infância (1639), Memorial dos Milagres e Memorial da Paixão de Cristo de Soror Maria de Mesquita Pimentel (1581-1661)

Grant number: 13/06249-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2013
Effective date (End): May 30, 2016
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Literature - Modern Foreign Languages
Principal Investigator:Adma Fadul Muhana
Grantee:Fabio Mario da Silva
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):13/21734-2 - Critical edition of Memorial da Infância de Christo e Triumpho do divino Amor (1639), by Soror Maria de Mesquita Pimentel (1581-1661), with an introduction and critical apparatus, BE.EP.PD


This project will analyse the first epic work written and published by a woman in the Portuguese language: Memorial da Infância de Cristo (1639) by Soror Maria de Mesquita Pimentel (1581-1661) and the others parts of this epic trilogy, Memorial dos Milagres and Memorial da Paixão de Cristo. Firstly, it will demonstrate how the literary strategies deployed by the author consciously construct a female version of an epic, in the light of the cultural context of women in the 17th century. Secondly, it will attempt to understand why this work has remained invisible in literary criticism and scholarship, and how this marginalization reproduces the ongoing issues surrounding gender studies in Portuguese literature, where the canon offers very little space to women writers, especially prior to the 19th century. This project will furthermore entail the preparation of a critical edition of Memorial da Infância de Christo since, although this work is a significant one in the context of 17th century in Portuguese language, it remains inaccessible to teachers and researchers alike. Above all, this project aims to recuperate women's writing prior to the 19th century. As such, it will involve the creation of a new research area at the University of São Paulo entitled: "Portuguese Women Writers: from the beginnings to the 18th century".

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