‘Cervantes had beautiful statements about the freedom of women’ – Music and Books – Culture

Miguel de Cervantes gave a lot to his country, the greatest literary work ever written, and received little, the director of the RAE, Santiago Muñoz-Machado, assures EFE. who believes that this way of behaving with his great figures is part of the history of the Spanish.

More than a thousand pages make up the book ‘Cervantes’ by Muñoz-Machado which, edited by Crítica, reaches bookstores, a great biography of the author of Don Quixote that also brings together literary criticism, the historical context and the analysis of its sources, it is that is, the thematic sets that most attracted the author.

Much has been written about Cervantes, abundant biographies and countless analyzes of his texts, but the director of the RAE explains that he wanted to do it in a way “clearer and more systematized and more supported by research”.

And framing it in the society of his time and through the analysis of his religious ideas, about women and couples, about minorities or about the law, Cervantine opinions about “those who have invented things that are really picturesque”, he specifies.

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Cervantes’ life has been subjected to “important manipulations and nonsense. It has been heard that he was a genius in any branch of knowledge, that although he had not studied at any university, he was a man well versed in any branch of science, and all that They are unnecessary misrepresentations and exaggerations because what he was is a formidable writer and a person with a really immense imagination,” he maintains.

But he did not have a retribution in life and it also took many years to recognize his merit after death. It took a lot for there to be good editions of his work, for his life to be finished, for there to be tributes and statues to be erected, “but it is also part of the history of the Spanish and the way of behaving with the great figures”, emphasizes the National Prize for Essay (2013) and History (2018).

Thus, he explains, the first biography of Cervantes was commissioned by an English nobleman and published in London in 1738, well over a century after his death. And Spain still took many more years, in 1780.

Lope de Vega or Quevedo, recalls Muñoz-Machado, had more generous patrons than Cervantes, who sometimes received almost “alms”, which “did not even allow paying for a good tombstone to put his name and remember that a genius slept there forever” .

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But Muñoz-Machado considers that it is no longer time to ask if something is owed to him, but “to maintain his memory and remember the importance of his work. The best tribute that can be paid to him is not to forget that he is the greatest novelist who has written in Spanish and, therefore, encourage reading, make good editions of his works and remind young people to open the pages and get used to reading any Cervantine work little by little”.

Muñoz-Machado does not believe that it can be said that Cervantes was ahead of his time, but he did “know how to look with very precise eyes, with a very accurate gaze” at what was happening.

In some cases she manifested herself as a liberal person, “within an order by the society of her time”, indicates the academic, who considers that although it cannot be said that she was a feminist, because the concept did not exist nor did the situation allow it, there are “beautiful statements about women’s freedom” in her work.

However, the director of the RAE maintains, Cervantes knew in life “that he was as good as the best and that he had surpassed all”, due to the dazzling success of Don Quixote, a success that came to him at a late age for the time that he lived, when he was almost 60 years old, but that did not help him to have special recognitions either.

And what would Cervantes think of the society of our times?: “Surely Cervantes’ eyes would serve to qualify this world and he would still see many things that he saw in his, such as an overabundant legislation that was dictated capriciously without any need, judges who sometimes they make mistakes in an intolerable way or that they use power for their benefit, corruption, or bribery not as much as in their time but that continues to exist. It would make fun of some beliefs, “says the academic about the “relics” he visited and that he would still find in some churches, “many things that eternal Spain still preserves”.


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