In the book The Back Room, what was the Women's Section of the Falangist party and what were its goals? Who was Queen Isabella? In what ways was she a role model for Spanish women?

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The goals of the Women’s Section of the Falangist party centered on countering the advances that women made during the Spanish Republic. Near the end of chapter 3 in The Back Room, Carmen Martin Gaite details the ideology of the Women’s Section, who stressed family and marriage. The Women’s Section reinforced the belief that a woman’s role in life is to, in Helen R. Lane's translation, “complement” and “mirror” the man. Their mission was to train young women to seek happiness in marriage, abnegation, and domesticity. During the republic, Spanish women gained rights, like the right to vote. The Women’s Section dedicated itself to “discrediting the feminist stirrings” of that period.

The Women’s Section used Queen Isabella, the queen of Spain from 1474 to 1504, as a model for Spanish women to follow. The Women’s Section portrayed her as strong-willed, self-sacrificing, and a solid supporter of Catholicism. According to the Women’s Section, Queen Isabella effectively managed ambitious men and surrendered her jewels for the welfare of her country. For the Women’s Section, Queen Isabella was a woman worthy of admiration and immense pride.

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