Thursday 20 November 2014 – Lunchtime seminar with Dr Anja Louis (Intercultural Studies, SHU)

Title: ‘But are you a real lawyer?’ Career women in 1960s Spain
Speaker: Dr Anja Louis (SHU)

Dr Anja Louis is Senior Lecturer in Spanish and Intercultural Studies at the Sheffield Business School (SBS), Sheffield Hallam University. She is the author of Women and the Law: Carmen de Burgos an Early Feminist (Tamesis, 2005) which was the first study to apply the insights and methodology of the interdisciplinary field of ‘law and culture’ in a Hispanic context. She has published widely on Carmen de Burgos and is currently co-editing a volume on this first-wave Spanish feminist. She has also published articles on the representation of female lawyers in Spanish film and television and is currently contributing to a volume entitled TV Law Today: a Transnational Overview.

In the 1960s the Francoist director José Luis Sáenz de Heredia directed two films about women lawyers: Los derechos de la mujer/Women’s Rights (1963) and Juicio de faldas/Skirts on Trial (1969). The former tells the story of a female criminal lawyer who, upon marriage, is faced with the choice between marriage and career; the latter deals with a female lawyer who defends a man charged with rape. Although both films are comedies, their representations of women lawyers are decidedly different.

This paper is part of a wider study on the representation of female lawyers in Spanish visual culture. It examines these early examples of professional women when access to the professions was one of the main issues and explores how female lawyers in popular cinema are often given a half measure of authority in narratives which move swiftly from patriarchal crisis to patriarchal restoration. It also examines how the female lawyer’s status as a figure with access to the law most often necessitates that she herself will be interrogated and put on trial.

1.00PM – 2.00PM
CANTOR 9020a

All SHU staff and students are welcome to attend the C3RI Lunchtime Research Seminars. If you are from outside of the University and would like to attend a seminar, please email CCRC Administrator, Rachel Finch (R [dot] Finch [at] shu [dot] ac [dot] uk) to arrange for entry.