The Woman Who Rewrote History: A Short Biography of Luisa Isabel Álvarez de Toledo, 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia

Claire Lloyd


The Woman Who Rewrote History: A Short Biography of Luisa Isabel Álvarez de Toledo, 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia

The Woman Who Rewrote History: A Short Biography of Luisa Isabel Álvarez de Toledo, 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia

  • Title: The Woman Who Rewrote History: A Short Biography of Luisa Isabel Álvarez de Toledo, 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia
  • Author: Claire Lloyd
  • ISBN: 9781465889492
  • Page: 205
  • Format: ebook



Luisa Isabel Mar a del Carmen CristinaRosal a Joaquina lvarez de Toledo y Maura, Isabel to her friends, was the 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia,one of the oldest aristocratic families in Spain She became known as the Red Duchess la Duquesa Roja because of her political convictions,for which she was imprisoned under the Franco regime A prolific writer and a controversiaLuisa Isabel Mar a del Carmen CristinaRosal a Joaquina lvarez de Toledo y Maura, Isabel to her friends, was the 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia,one of the oldest aristocratic families in Spain She became known as the Red Duchess la Duquesa Roja because of her political convictions,for which she was imprisoned under the Franco regime A prolific writer and a controversial historian, she inherited one of thelargest private historical archives in Europe, and dedicated her life to its organisation and preservation Controversial to the end, on her deathbed she married her female companion and secretary to ensure that the archive would remain intact in the ducal palace at Sanl car de Barrameda and not be divided amongst her children.Isabel was the product of generations of aristocrats, politicians, historians, warriors and controversialfigures Despite her strong belief in social justice she never renounced her titles, and is it intriguing to ponder what she saw as the role of the nobility in contemporary Spain, and where she saw herself within that structure.Certainly her titles protected her from almost certain execution following her outspoken criticism of Franco, but she retained them long after his death How did sheresolve the apparent contradiction of passing on the line ofSpain s oldest dukedom with her professed Republicanism Was her devotion to history and her family s place in it stronger than her political conscience Did she believein noblesse oblige, the responsibility of the privileged to the less fortunate Published accounts of Isabel s life tend to be eithersycophantic or deeply critical, depending on the standpoint of the writer However it became clear to me while reading them that she was neither saint nor sinner, but the product of her unique circumstances My principle aim in writing this article, therefore, is to paint a objective picture Apart from obituaries there is very little written about her in English, so my secondary aim is to bring this fascinating woman to the attention of a wider readership.


Recent Comments "The Woman Who Rewrote History: A Short Biography of Luisa Isabel Álvarez de Toledo, 21st Duchess of Medina Sidonia"

Excellent reading ! Important and rare.

Interesting though not engrossing.

epub version


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    Published :2019-01-25T10:18:25+00:00