1st Edition

French Dressing Women, Men, and Fiction in the Ancien Regime

By Nancy K. Miller Copyright 1995

    French Dressing looks at the ancien régime's scenarios of libertine seduction--unsafe sex and its consequences for women's lives. It places the gender performances of male and female-authored novels in dialogue in order to recover the complexity of a century obsessed, as we are today, with writing and living plots of desire. French Dressing exposes the erotic anxieties behind a national culture of sexual self-display--French undressing.

    I Reading in Pairs: 1. Repairing the Tradition; II Men's Reading, Women's Writing: 2. Rereading as a Woman: The Body in Practice; 3. Men's Reading, Women's Writing: Gender and the Rise of the Novel; 4. Cultural Memory and the Art of the Novel: Gender and Narrative in Eighteenth-Century France; 5. 1735: The Gender of the Memoir-Novel; III I's in Drag: 6. I's in Drag: The Sex of Recollection; 7. L'Histoire d'une Grecque moderne: No-Win Hermeneutics; 8. Justine, Or, the Vicious Circle; 9. Juliette and the Posterity of Prosperity; IV Exquisite Cadavers: 10. The Exquisite Cadavers: Women in Eighteenth-Century Fiction; 11. Tender Economies: Mme De Villedieu and the Costs of Indifference; 12. Tristes Triangles: Le Lys dans la vallee and Its Intertext; 13. Novels of Innocence: Fictions of Loss.


    Nancy K. Miller is Distinguished Professor of English at Lehman College and the Graduate Center, CUNY. She is the author of Getting Personal: Feminist Occasions and Other Autobiographical Acts, also published by Routledge.