The Exiled Queen Maria Casimira Sobieska in Rome: Gender, Culture and Politics

  • Giulia VincentiEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Proceedings in Business and Economics book series (SPBE)


This paper is about the figure of the Polish Queen Maria Casimira Sobieska, widow of King Jan Sobieski, the winner of the battle of Vienna, 1683. After her husband’s death, in 1696, she moved to Rome, where she cleverly integrated into the political and cultural context. The focus is Maria Casimira Sobieska’s cultural and political activity in a gender perspective, as she was one of the first two women admitted to the Academy of Arcadia. The intellectual activity of the Arcadia is presented trying to evaluate women’s involvement. The political character of Maria Casimira’s travel is closely related to her cultural activity in Rome, and her “pilgrimage-exile” is investigated in order to highlight its significant political implications. It is essential to examine the figures of female travellers especially if, as in the present case, they have significantly affected the political and cultural life of their time. Their travels, that were often undertaken because of or after their marriage, are fundamental to raise awareness and understanding of the role played by these travellers once they settled down in the places where they were headed. Travel itself has a pivotal role in historical and political transformations, more specifically in the development of the identity and inclusion–exclusion processes concerning different social groups and gender dynamics. The practice of voyage has radically evolved over time. Travel experience changed in space and in time, from the epic of Gilgamesh or Odysseus to the modern idea of tourism. Ancients valued travel as an explication of human fate and necessity; for modern people it is an expression of freedom and an escape from necessity and duty. The history of travel is the study of a force—mobility—that has shaped human history and that is clearly still influencing our present. However travel appears to be, with its historical, economic, cultural and political implications, and in its evolution, a male prerogative. This is the reason why the present work examines women’s weight in culture and politics proposing an alternative point of view.


Travel history Female travels Maria Casimira Sobieska Academy of Arcadia 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Niccolò Cusano UniversityRomeItaly

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