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Look Inside Taste and Ideology in Seventeenth-Century France

Taste and Ideology in Seventeenth-Century France


Part of Cambridge Studies in French

  • Date Published: June 2009
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521113366

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About the Authors
  • This book analyses the use of the crucial concept of 'taste' in the works of five major seventeenth-century French authors, Méré, Saint Evremond, La Rochefoucauld, La Bruyère and Boileau. It combines close readings of important texts with a thoroughgoing political analysis of seventeenth-century French society in terms of class and gender. Dr Moriarty shows that far from being timeless and universal, the term 'taste' is culture-specific, shifting according to the needs of a writer and his social group. The notion of 'taste' not only helped to shape a new dominant culture, but also registered the conflicts within that culture between a view of taste that presupposted the values of 'polite society' as an exclusive (though not necessarily aristocratic) group, and a view that stressed the value of the classical-humanist tradition as a source of standards ratified by a broader public. this study sheds light not only on the central concept, but also on the individual authors discussed and on the norms of French classical literature in general.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2009
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521113366
    • length: 244 pages
    • dimensions: 216 x 140 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.32kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. 'Taste' and history
    2. Defining goǔt: the dictionaries
    3. Méré: taste and the ideology of honněteté
    4. Saint Evremond: taste and cultural hegemony
    5. La Rochefoucauld: tastes and their vicissitudes
    6. La Bruyère: taste-discourse and the absent subject
    7. Boileau: taste and the institution of 'literature'

  • Author

    Michael Moriarty

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