I want to write about Mistral’s connection to the natural and unnatural world with not only herself but her femininity. Mistral’s poetry is a social commentary on gender and her own sense of sensuality. Mistral’s writing spurred a great deal of activism; Mistral was universally recognized and respected as a social leader, author, and first Latin American to receive the Nobel peace prize.
- In the feminine mode: essays on Hispanic women writers
Noel Maureen Valis, Carol Maier
Compares Mistral’s work with that of other Hispanic writers. Valis and Maier claim that writers including Mistral “defined word and world in a distinctly feminine way”. Authors delve into the tension and topic of gender in Mistral’s word beginning with her pen name and story behind that. Authors also talk about how Mistral really broke the gender barrier on the way that women writers were supposed to talk about. Instead of talking about the “love of God, nature, the mother, the world’s just causes, and the humble” Mistral chose to write in realms dealing with topics such as transcending death, and manipulated the words to become her own style, talking about “dust, slumber, moonlight, and earthly imprisonment”, challenging all confines for female writers of the time.
- Notes Towards a Definition of Gabriela Mistral’s Ideology
Author Fernando Alegria shows Mistral in a different light than any other. Alegria writes how Mistral’s legacy is really in how she delivered her work through her oral poetry; the “improvised talks she gave at university halls or at private gatherings, the conversations she carried on all night, sipping her scotch whiskey and smoking cigarettes”. Alegria claims that “it is possible with the passing of time the oral poetry of Gabriela Mistral will be considered the most profound and valuable expression of her creative genius”. To me, this really shifted the image I had built of Mistral in my mind. Now, I view her more care-free, rebellious, hard-edged. With author Alegria focusing more on Mistral’s rebellious feminist, a young teacher who fought bigotry, social prejudice, hypocrisy, and dogmatism. Mistral was “a feminist from the start, supporting political reforms considered too radical by her superiors.” Mistral’s activism and a true passion for women’s rights are detailed in Alegria’s writing. Mistral “pointed at social conditions in Chile and suggested the need for agrarian reform, for laws intended to protect women’s rights.”
- Profile of a Great Woman
Gonzalez, Manuel Pedro
A synopsis of Mistral’s life in general. Gonzalez talks about Mistral’s personality and being apart from her words and writing. Gonzalez states that Mistral’s “mind was ecumenic, and the welfare and destiny of mankind were her constant preoccupation. She was a true citizen of the world” and that “to say that she was an outstanding or eminent woman would be a trite affirmation, a banality that expresses nothing. It was not possible to meet her and talk to her without being deeply impressed by her forceful personality”. Gonzalez talks about Mistral’s physicality and her physical actions, movements, and appearance.