Cover: Daughters of Eve: A Cultural History of French Theater Women from the Old Regime to the Fin de Siècle, from Harvard University PressCover: Daughters of Eve in HARDCOVER

Daughters of Eve

A Cultural History of French Theater Women from the Old Regime to the Fin de Siècle

Add to Cart

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$86.50 • £69.95 • €78.00

ISBN 9780674005969

Publication Date: 12/15/2001

Short

320 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

9 halftones

World

Famous and seductive, female stage performers haunted French public life in the century before and after the Revolution. This pathbreaking study delineates the distinctive place of actresses, dancers, and singers within the French erotic and political imaginations. From the moment they became an unofficial caste of mistresses to France’s elite during the reign of Louis XIV, their image fluctuated between emasculating men and delighting them.

Drawing upon newspaper accounts, society columns, theater criticism, government reports, autobiographies, public rituals, and a huge corpus of fiction, Lenard R. Berlanstein argues that the public image of actresses was shaped by the political climate and ruling ideology; thus they were deified in one era and damned in the next. Tolerated when civil society functioned and demonized when it faltered, they finally passed from notoriety to celebrity with the stabilization of parliamentary life after 1880. Only then could female fans admire them openly, and could the state officially recognize their contributions to national life.

Daughters of Eve is a provocative look at how a culture creates social perceptions and reshuffles collective identities in response to political change.

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution, by Lindsay Chervinsky, from Harvard University Press

Why You Should Participate in an (Online) Book Club

Online book clubs can be a rewarding way to connect with readers, Lindsay Chervinsky discovered, when she was invited to join one to discuss her book, The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution. Since my book was published in April 2020, I’ve discovered that my work appeals to three main audiences. First, the general readers who are enthusiastic about history, attend virtual events, and tend to support local historic sites. Second, readers who are curious about our government institutions and the current political climate and are looking for answers about its origins. And third, history, social studies, and government teachers