The Wandering Life I Led: Essays on Hortense Mancini, Duchess Mazarin and Early Modern Women's Border Crossings Hardcover – Unabridged, 1 Aug 2009
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"This volume is the fullest and most accurate account we may ever have of the fascinating career of the Duchess of Mazarin. More than that: it is a genuine contribution to our understanding of many aspects of European culture in the later seventeenth century, using the attractive and transgressive figure of the Duchess to explore larger social, political, and aesthetic issues. The disciplinary range is exemplary, as experts from art history, literature, music, and history bring their particular skills to bear upon a figure notable for her beauty, talent, and courage. Their contributions, rich in primary detail and interpretive nuance, shed new light on the period and its afterlife." - James A. Winn, English Department, Boston University "This volume of essays brings into admirable fullness one of the single most fascinating women in early modern European history, the proto-feminist Duchess Mazarin, nee Hortence Mancini. The interdisciplinary panel of specialists assembled here presents her as the very paradigm of a key seventeenth-century concern: how to construct a sense of self, and in particular, a liberated female self in a male-dominated world. The Duchess Mazarin challenged contemporary expectations and conventions in a most public fashion, crossing numerous "borders" in full public view throughout her life. The differing disciplinary perspectives of the six essays map as well as match her own multi-faceted process of self-realization in all its complexity, while also providing the perspective of Hortense's contemporary audience as a revealing counterbalance. Her compelling 'story' becomes even more so through these exemplary essays." - Kathleen Nicholson, Art History Department, University of Oregon, Eugene
About the Author
SUSAN SHIFRIN is Assistant Professor of Art History at Ursinus College and Associate Director for Education at the Berman Museum of Art at Ursinus College. Her recent publications include essays on the iconography and reception of the Duchess Mazarin and an edited volume titled Re-framing Representations of Women: Figuring, Fashioning, Portraiting and Telling in the 'Picturing' Women Project.
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