Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Clara Campoamor

My latest Net travels brings you this lovely young lady in the picture. Pintarest has become my distraction of late as I wait in line at the deli counter. When I saw this statue slide across the screen I was instantly smitten and pinned it. Now I had no idea who the statue was dedicated too. I read the name on the book and saw 'Clara Campoamor' as the title on the book. The name did not ring any bells. I was thinking maybe she's the young heroine of a Spanish fable that I hadn't discovered yet. Perhaps she was a feisty and precocious bookworm along the lines of a Nancy Drew.

Not even close, please forgive me, ardent feminists, for not picking up on the name or the date of 1931 earlier. 1930s Spain was a not a fun place to be, but if you were an author of that era you were there (see Ernest Hemingway). In truth Clara Campoamor was an influential Spanish suffragette who pushed the cause of equality in Spain. She was active in the Second Republic before its collapse and it was her influence on the writing of the new constitution in 1931 which led to language including the voting equality of women. Interesting note she was elected to the 1931 Constituent Assembly by a male-only vote. She was forced to flee to Switzerland during the Spanish Civil War after Franco seized control.

I tried to look for some information on the statue itself. There were many notes saying 'Hey, cool statue with a girl reading a book'. The information is a little sketchy but I did find out that it was recently dedicated in Seville in 2007 was created by Anna Jonsson. (I tried looking her up but no luck). After a little more digging with the help of Google Translate and Babelfish I was able to dig up a few more pictures of the statue and more importantly the dedication plate.

"Por su inigualable contribucion a la libertad de las mujeres la que fue su lucha forma parte del presente de nuestros derechos."

The statue is an interesting way to pay homage to Clara Campoamor. I mean the statue is innocence personified. The girl looks more akin to Lewis Carrol's Alice than any relation to a political figure from 1930's Spain. I'm not complaining. It got me curious and I went the extra few miles to find out what the whole statue was about. I'm glad that Spain made it through the fire and there exists a safe place for this girl to read about such women who came before her.

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