Sor Juana was a complex figure: a woman in a patriarchal society, a court favorite, a nun who once fired her confessor. Find passages from Sor Juana’s work that help explain or illuminate her cultural power. What do these passages suggest about the woman, her world, and her enduring legacy?

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz seems very modern in her attitude to such social questions as gender dynamics, making many of the same points as modern and contemporary feminists. However, she also appears timeless and universal in her contemplative poetry on the mysterious of the cosmos.

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Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz writes on a wide range of subjects with a combination of passionate intensity and intellectual enquiry. These qualities make her seem both modern and timeless. The main thing she tells us about seventeenth-century Mexico is that it was not very different from our own culture. In terms of her social commentary, Sor Juana was an early feminist, who commented scathingly on the patriarchal society in which she lived with poems such as "You Foolish Men ." This contains criticism of male behavior towards, and views of, women which are echoed in twentieth...

(The entire section contains 295 words.)

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