Blood Sisters: The French Revolution in Women's Memory / Edition 2

Blood Sisters: The French Revolution in Women's Memory / Edition 2

by Marilyn Yalom, Marilyn Yalom
     
 

The promises of "liberty, equality, and fraternity" did not extend to women, but with the publication of Blood Sisters, the voices of the women who witnessed the French Revolution are finally restored to history. They left us an invaluable legacy - some eighty accounts of what they saw and experienced. These chronicles range from the sixteen-page testimonial of the… See more details below

Overview

The promises of "liberty, equality, and fraternity" did not extend to women, but with the publication of Blood Sisters, the voices of the women who witnessed the French Revolution are finally restored to history. They left us an invaluable legacy - some eighty accounts of what they saw and experienced. These chronicles range from the sixteen-page testimonial of the Widow Bault, wife of the concierge in Marie-Antoinette's prison, to the ten-volume memoirs of the prolific writer Mme de Genlis; from the dictated life story of an illiterate peasant to acknowledged classics by Mme Roland and Mme de Stael. No other literature in the Western world offers such an early treasury of women recording their personal histories within the context of a great political cataclysm. Their stories describe how they participated, individually and collectively, in the revolutionary saga and how they sometimes succeeded in manipulating a political system designed to exclude them. Whatever their political loyalties, the women saw themselves as victims, and their accounts document the connection between gender and victimization. Yet they did not accept their victimization passively. The memoirists of Blood Sisters portray themselves as active participants cheering the Revolution on its course or, more frequently, resisting it. Marilyn Yalom singles out those who authored the most unforgettable chronicles: the governess of the royal children; the servant attending Marie-Antoinette in her last days; Robespierre's sister, Charlotte; the peasant woman from the Vendee who fought as a soldier; and, of course, Mme Roland, whose autobiography has enchanted readers for centuries. Aristocrats and bourgeois women, royalists and republicans, even the few peasant and working-class women who left accounts of their experiences - all were bound together by a common nightmare. These compelling human dramas - moving accounts of survival on the cusp of catastrophe - add suffering faces to the canvas of lo

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780044409182
Publisher:
Pandora Press
Publication date:
01/28/1993
Pages:
308
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.10(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1Introduction: Memory and Memoirs1
2The Year 1789, in Women's Words15
3The Fall of the Royal Family: Witnessed by the Duchesse de Tourzel35
4The King and the Queen in the Face of Death: Witnessed by Madame Royale and Rosalie Lamorliere57
5The Republic Vindicated and Violated: Starring Madame Roland75
6The Other Robespierre99
7The Widow Le Bas115
8Germaine de Stael's Considerations of the French Revolution133
9Plights and Ploys in the Provinces: Madame Vallon and Alexandrine des Echerolles165
10The Women of the Vendee191
11Exile: London, St. Petersburg, and Upstate New York209
12Reflections, Personal and Political237
Notes245
Annotated Bibliography of French Women's Eyewitness Accounts of the Revolution267
Index299

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