Spanish Women in History

Tomorrow it’s the día de la mujer (Women’s day) here in Spain and I wanted to share with you how it is celebrated. In this bilingual text, you’ll discover more about this day and also learn about historical figures that shaped Spain and how they are present in our daily life. 

Women’s day in Spain

Ocho de marzo (March 8th) is the date Spain recognizes and honors the achievements and contributions of women. Celebrations often include a mix of cultural, social, and political events. One of the main features is las manifestaciones (demonstrations) held in all cities in Spain. There are some in the capital, of course, but there are gatherings in almost every city and town in Spain, including Muxía, where I live.

Another important part of this date is celebrating women in history. In recent years, the government of Spain has decided to name many places in honor of famous women. In this blogpost, I’d like to add my little contribution sharing with you 3 places in Spain that were named after Spanish women in History:

Estación de tren de Chamartín – Clara Campoamor (Madrid)

One of the most important train stations in Madrid is named after Clara Campoamor, a trailblazing figure in Spanish history, was a tireless advocate for derechos delas mujeres (women’s rights), especially during the early 20th century.

Born in 1888, she played a pivotal role in securing el voto femenino (women’s suffrage) in Spain.  As a lawyer, feminist, and politician, Campoamor fearlessly fought for the inclusion of women in the democratic process, leaving an indelible mark on the nation’s journey towards la igualdad de género (gender equality).

Estación de autobuses de León –  Doña Urraca (León)

The bus station in León will soon be named “Reina Doña Urraca I of León”. The decision to name the station after the first reina (queen), Doña Urraca I of León, recognizes her historical and cultural legacy. She was one of the first women to rule with full rights in Europe, reivindicando (defending) the female role in the Middle Ages more than anyone else.

We can say, without a doubt she was one of the precursoras (pioneers) of the lucha feminista (feminist movement), and it so happens that she died on a day like March 8, but in 1126.

Aeropuerto de Santiago – Rosalía de Castro  (Santiago de Compostela)

Santiago’s airport takes its name from a woman who gave voice to the beauty and struggles of her people. Rosalía de Castro, born in 1837, is celebrated as one of the most significant literary figures in the Galician and Spanish-speaking world.

As a poet and novelist, her works, such as “Cantares Gallegos,” pioneered the recognition of the Galician language and culture. Throughout her life, the author published numerous works in which she defended the independencia (independence), libertad (freedom) and igualdad (equality) of women.

If you’d like to know about other important women in History, check out Isabel Ruiz Ruiz’s book, Mujeres 2. It’s got wonderful illustrations and the stories behind each woman she portrays is so inspirational!

How about you? How do you celebrate women’s day? Are there any special events organized in the country you live in? Let me know in the comments below what you thought about these Spanish women in History and don’t forget that, if you’d like to discover more about Spanish language and culture, you can sign up to our “Tomamos un café” advanced speaking group lessons.

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