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Styles of Enlightenment
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summary
Styles of Enlightenment argues that alongside its democratic ideals and its efforts to create a unified public sphere, the Enlightenment also displayed a tendency to erect rigid barriers when it came to matters of style and artistic expression. The French philosophes tackled the issue of the hierarchy of genres with surprising inflexibility, and they looked down on those forms of art that they saw as commercial, popular, and merely entertaining. They were convinced that the standard of taste was too important a matter to be left to the whims of the public and the vagaries of the marketplace: aesthetic judgment ought to belong to a few, enlightened minds who would then pass it on to the masses. Through readings of fictions, essays, memoirs, eulogies, and theatrical works by F

Table of Contents

  1. Contents
  2. p. ix
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. p. xi
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-15
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  1. Prologue: Boudoir and Tribune
  2. pp. 16-44
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  1. 1 A Faded Coquette: Marivaux and the Philosophes
  2. pp. 45-58
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  1. 2 Fakes, Impostors, and Beaux Esprits: Conversation’s Backstage
  2. pp. 59-84
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  1. 3 The Sly and the Coy Mistress: Style and Manner from F
  2. pp. 85-112
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  1. 4 Capturing Fireside Conversation: Diderot and Marivaux’s Stylistic Challenge
  2. pp. 113-140
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  1. 5 Grace and the Epistemology of Confused Perception
  2. pp. 141-166
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  1. 6 Between Paris and Rome: Montesquieu’s Poetry of History
  2. pp. 167-193
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  1. 7 Montesquieu for the Masses, or Implanting False Memory
  2. pp. 194-220
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  1. 8 Everlasting Theatricality: Arlequin and the Untamed Parterre
  2. pp. 221-251
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  1. Epilogue: The Costume of Modernity
  2. pp. 252-262
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 263-329
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 331-346
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