9780801475450-0801475457-Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters

Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters

ISBN-13: 9780801475450
ISBN-10: 0801475457
Edition: Illustrated
Author: Goodman, Dena
Publication date: 2009
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Format: Paperback 408 pages
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Book details

ISBN-13: 9780801475450
ISBN-10: 0801475457
Edition: Illustrated
Author: Goodman, Dena
Publication date: 2009
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Format: Paperback 408 pages

Summary

Acknowledged authors Goodman, Dena wrote Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters comprising 408 pages back in 2009. Textbook and eTextbook are published under ISBN 0801475457 and 9780801475450. Since then Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters textbook was available to sell back to BooksRun online for the top buyback price of $ 2.00 or rent at the marketplace.

Description

Over the course of the eighteenth century, increasing numbers of French women, from the wives and daughters of artisans and merchants to countesses and queens, became writers-not authors, and not mere signers of names, but writers of letters. Taking as her inspiration a portrait of an unknown woman writing a letter to her children by French painter Adélaïde Labille-Guiard, Dena Goodman challenges the deep-seated association of women with love letters and proposes a counternarrative of young women struggling with the challenges of the modern world through the mediation of writing. In Becoming a Woman in the Age of Letters, Goodman enters the lives and world of these women, drawing on their letters, the cultural history of language and education, and the material culture of letter writing itself: inkstands, desks, and writing paper.

Goodman follows the lives of elite women from childhood through their education in traditional convents and modern private schools and into the shops and interior spaces in which epistolary furnishings and furniture were made for, sold to, and used by women who took pen in hand. Stationers set up fashionable shops, merchants developed lines of small writing desks, and the furnishings and floor plans of homes changed to accommodate women's needs. It was as writers and consumers that women entered not only shops but also the modern world that was taking shape in Paris and other cities.

Although many women, from major novelists, painters, and educators to schoolgirls and their mothers as well as Parisian tourists and other shoppers, come to life in this book, Goodman focuses on four bodies of epistolary work by little-known women: the letters of Genevieve de Malboissiére, Manon Phlipon, Catherine de Saint-Pierre, and Sophie Silvestre. These letters allow Goodman to explore how particular girls of different social positions came to womanhood through letter writing. She shows how letter writing expanded women's horizons even as it deepened their ability to reflect on themselves.

The analysis of more than one hundred illustrations―from paintings by major Dutch and French artists to inkstands and writing desks, stationers' trade cards, and manuscript letters on decorated paper―is integral to Goodman's argument.

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