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'Images of "taste" and "tastelessness" in French literature'

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Elinor Shaffer FBA.

A meeting of the Reading and Reception Studies Seminar at Clare Hall

This paper discusses the complex ways in which French writers since 1600 have interwoven ‘taste’ and ‘tastelessness’ in their works. Their practice has belied the caricatural versions of ‘le goût’ and ‘le dégoût’ that were promoted, often for political reasons, both at home and abroad.

Alison’s paper will be followed by questions and discussion. The meeting will conclude at 6:45pm with drinks. All are welcome!

Alison Finch read Modern Languages, with a PhD on Proust, at Girton College, Cambridge. She became the Fellow in French at Churchill College in 1972, and was subsequently appointed to a University Lectureship in the Cambridge Department of French. Between 1993 and 2003 she was a Lecturer and Fellow at Oxford, where she became a Professor in the University’s Recognition of Distinction scheme, and where she chaired the sub-faculty of French for 3 years. In 2003 she returned to Churchill College as a Senior Research Fellow, and is an Honorary Professor of French Literature of the University of Cambridge. She has published widely on post-1800 French literature; her two most recent books are Women’s Writing in Nineteenth-Century France and French Literature: A Cultural History, published by Polity Press in 2010.

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