Abstract

Hyppolite Clairon, perhaps the greatest actress of the eighteenth-century French stage, has long been defined by what others have written about her, despite having authored an erudite, passionate memoir in which she explains her work as an actress and defends her sometimes scandalous personal life. This essay seeks to compare the two narratives that have come to dominate the modern understanding of Clairon’s legacy (Denis Diderot’s Paradoxe sur le comédien and François-Joseph Talma’s Quelques réflexions sur Lekain et sur l’art théâtral) with Clairon’s own Mémoires, in order to recover a more complete portrait of Clairon as an emblematic actress of the Enlightenment.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-315X
Print ISSN
0013-2586
Pages
pp. 417-436
Launched on MUSE
2015-07-06
Open Access
No
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