Margarita Nelken

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Margarita Nelken Mansberger
Margarita Nelken, en Mundo Gráfico.jpg
Born Margarita Nelken
1894
Madrid
Died 1968 (aged 74)
Mexico City
Nationality Spanish
Occupation Art critics, writer

Margarita Nelken (1894–1968) was a Spanish feminist and writer. She was a well known intellectual and a central figure in the earliest Spanish women's movement in the 1930s.

Early life and education[edit]

Nelken was born María Teresa Lea Nelken y Mansberger[1] in Madrid in 1894.[2] Her parents were of German-Jewish origin and owners of a jewelry store.[2] She studied music, painting and languages,[2] and she learned to speak French, German and English besides her native Spanish.[1] Her sister, Carmen Eva Nelken, was an actress and writer.[3]

Career and views[edit]

Nelken wrote books of fiction with a socio-political orientation in the 1920s, including La trampa del arenal (The sand trap, 1923).[4] Her other works include La condición social de la mujer en España (The social condition of women in Spain, 1922)[5][6] and La mujer ante las cortes constituyentes (1931).[7] She also wrote books about Spanish women writers and Spanish women politicians as well as short stories.[5] She held militant perspective of feminism, claiming that exploitation of women workers had negative effects on both male workers and women.[8]

Political career[edit]

In 1931, she became a member of the Socialist Party[9] and ran for office in the partial elections in October 1931 as a candidate for the Agrupación Socialista in Badajoz.[3] She was elected to the Constitutive Parliament.[10][11] She also won the elections of November 1933 and February 1936.[3] Although she was a feminist, she rejected the Spanish women's right to vote, arguing that they were not ready for it.[10][12] A fervent advocate of the Agrarian Reform, she was the victim of the attacks from the right because her ethnicity and her feminist background.[13] After the Asturian Revolution of 1934, she was accused of military rebellion and left Spain. While in exile, she lived in Paris and visited Scandinavia and the Soviet Union, raising funds for the victims of the repression.[14] She returned to Spain in 1936. After the beginning of the Spanish Civil War, she remained in Madrid, organizing the transfer of the artistic treasures of Toledo to the vault of the Bank of Spain in order to protect them and giving radio spechess in order to rise the moral of the militiamen.[15] Then, disappointed by the leadership of Largo Caballero, she left the PSOE and joined the Communist Party (PCE).[16]

Exile and death[edit]

She served at the parliament until 1939, and as a Republican and socialist, she and her sister exiled to Mexico at the end of the Spanish civil war.[3] There she worked as an art critic.[2][5] She also wrote a book entitled Los judíos en la cultura hispánica in Mexico, which was republished by AHebraica in Spain in 2009.[3] Nelken died in Mexico on 9 March 1968.[3][17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p. 301
  2. ^ a b c d Janet Pérez; Maureen Ihrie (2002). The Feminist Encyclopedia of Spanish Literature: N-Z. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 439. ISBN 978-0-313-32445-1. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "An essay by Margarita Nelken published for the first time in Spain" (PDF). Routes of Sepharad (5). March 2010. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  4. ^ Harriet Turner; Adelaida L Pez De Mart Nez (11 September 2003). The Cambridge Companion to the Spanish Novel: From 1600 to the Present. Cambridge University Press. p. 167. ISBN 978-0-521-77815-2. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c Catherine Davies (1 December 2000). Spanish Women's Writing 1849-1996. Continuum. p. 110. ISBN 978-0-567-55958-6. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  6. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. pp.308-309
  7. ^ "First-Wave Spanish Feminism" (PDF). PSU. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  8. ^ Ackelsberg, Martha A. (1991). Free Women of Spain: Anarchism and the Struggle for the Emancipation of Women (PDF). Oakland: AK Press. ISBN 1-902593-96-0. 
  9. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p. 318
  10. ^ a b "The Second Republic: The conquery of women's vote" (PDF). Comenius Project. 2006–2007. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  11. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p. 319
  12. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p. 322
  13. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. pp. 319, 321 and 354
  14. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. pp.341-342
  15. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p.357
  16. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p.364
  17. ^ Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. p. 406

Bibliography[edit]

  • Preston, Paul. (2002). Doves of war. Four women of Spain. Harper Collins. London. ISBN 9780-00-638694-0