Intellectual Tacking: Questions of Education in the Works of Isabelle de Charrière.
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|Editeur||Rodopi - Brill|
|Distributeur||Editions de Boccard|
Isabelle de Charrière (Belle van Zuylen) has been known primarily as a novelist who experimented with narrative techniques to express her concern about the oppression of women in her society. Most scholarship has focused on only a small part of her work, her pre-revolutionary novels. This is one of the first synthetic studies of Charrière's entire œuvre, and it turns its attention to Charrière's overlooked contribution as an intellectual in the eighteenth-century debate over education. In addition, Letzter analyzes the rhetorical and discursive strategies Charrière employed to insert herself in this debate; a debate from which she was excluded because she was a woman and she was not French. Letzter's model for this analysis is the rhetorical figure of tacking, a nautical term used by Charrière herself in order to describe her tactics for intellectual engagement within the gendered environment the gendered environment of revolutionary debate. Letzter demonstrates Charrière's contribution as an important intellectual of the Revolution and of the post-revolutionary period, whose significance resided in her ability to express her ambivalence toward the theories and ideologies that ceaselessly imposed themselves on women.
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