Download Almost a man of genius: Clémence Royer, feminism, and by Joy Harvey PDF

By Joy Harvey

Clemence Royer used to be a 19th-century Frenchwoman most likely top recognized for generating the 1st French translation of Charles Darwin. besides the fact that, her efforts went a lot extra, encompassing anthropology, physics, philosophy, cosmology, and chemistry. during this full-scale biography, Harvey, a technological know-how historian and previous affiliate editor of Cambridge University's Darwin Correspondence venture, strains Royer's amazing lifestyles.

A feminist who made lifelong enemies nearly as comfortably as she made acquaintances, Royer was once by no means capable of adopt formal, complex schooling and was once a made of her personal self-study efforts. in simple terms in her previous couple of years used to be she officially well-known via numerous expert societies and presented the French Legion of Honor. Harvey contains an outline of past biographical remedies, the textual content of an 1874 conversation on "Women, technology, and the delivery Rate," and wide notes.

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Extra info for Almost a man of genius: Clémence Royer, feminism, and nineteenth-century science

Example text

But she soon developed a dramatic reaction to the heavy Catholic religious training that was part of her preparation for First Communion. Attending Communion classes a year earlier than most children in the school because she seemed intellectually precocious, she was shocked at the possibility of sinning without knowing it and imagined herself to be guilty of unmentionable sins. At first, visualizing Paradise and Hell to herself, she sought mystical experiences, imagining herself as destined for sainthood.

When one writes about a well-known man or woman, one can take many things for granted. A biographer of Charles Darwin or Coleridge, Oscar Wilde or Mary Wollstonecraft can put the subject's last name alone in the title and expect immediate recognition. A lesser-known figure requires an apologia, an explanation of who this is, why one has bothered to write a biography about her. " In Royer's case, because she was a philosopher and critic of science rather than a working scientist, there are no "discoveries" to which one can point.

In addition, I thank Geneviève Fraisse, whose careful reading of and commentary on the complete manuscript aided me beyond measure. Of course, any errors that remain are my own. To the many librarians and archivists in France, Britain, Switzerland, and Italy who have aided me over the years I would like to express my gratitude and recognition. I also recognize a debt to Denise Ferembach, former secretary-general of the Société d'Anthropologie de Paris, who many years ago made it possible for me to use the invaluable archives of that society.

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