These representative works by early Spanish American women writers are the first to be made available in a bilingual edition. The texts provide an overview of writers from the Colonial period to the nineteenth century. They include an exploration account, the vida of a mystic, an autobiography of a transvestite, poetry by Sor Juana Ins de la Cruz, essays, and two vellas. While all of the writers shared being white and literate, their life experiences were extremely diverse, and themes of repression, both personal and political, permeate the collection. Scott's introduction emphasises the networks of friendship and support among women writers that developed, especially in the nineteenth century. The new translations make many of these texts available to English-speaking readers for the first time.