Letter To Sor Philothea Vitoria Analysis

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Vitoria’s main objective in Political Writings is to qualify Spanish presence in the New World and create a logical and just path for Spanish domination of the natives following the logic of St. Thomas Aquinas. Vitoria uses just and an unjust titles to outline what native offenses justify the Spanish to wage war against them and subdue them. Just titles create a sort of contract between the natives and the Spaniard, that if broken justify Spanish subjugation of natives. His first just title declares that Spaniards have the right to dwell in native lands, carry out trade with the natives, and take natural resources from the lands. His second, third, and fourth just titles declare that Spaniards have the right to spread Christianity in the natives’…show more content…
Throughout Sor Juana stresses how her intelligence, along with every other part of her being, and her thirst for knowledge were given to her by God. She says that she has prayed that God would rid her of her addiction to truth, but her incessant drive has not relented, by God’s will. She even details the birth of her inclination to knowledge as an extremely young child, indicating her free will is not the cause of her draw to knowledge but her predetermined fate chosen by God. She speaks of a time when she was stripped of her books for three months. Despite her famine of writing, her mind continued to ponder, to think, to experiment. In telling this story, Sor Juana emphasizes that her intelligence is completely out of her control. She appropriates the notion of predeterminism indicated by Catholicism, exemplified by the notion that God creates everything in his infinite wisdom. She can justify her own actions by stating that they are predetermined and therefore completely out of her control. How could holy men punish her for the faculties that God bestowed upon her, if everything God gives and makes is perfect? To finish this line of thought, Sor Juana closes the letter with a summary of women in the Bible who were also bestowed great gifts of character and reason, such as the wise Queen of Sheba who was not punished in the slightest for her extreme

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