The French Consul's Wife

The French Consul's Wife

  • Electronic book text
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'What a subject for a film, but not, please, Meryl Streep ...Together with Dr Patricia Clancy (Melbourne University) and Jeanne Allen's (La Trobe University) elegant translation and able notes, the memoirs make for a piquant, informative, variegated and often startling read ...Miegunyah Press you've done it again.' (Derek Whitelock, Weekend Australian) A former Parisian courtesan, circus performer and dancer, C leste de Chabrillan scandalised Melbourne society when she arrived in 1854 as the wife of the French Consul. These memoirs give a vivid firsthand account of the two-and-a-half years she spent in gold-rush Victoria. C leste's arrival in Melbourne was preceded by the publication of her memoirs describing her illegitimate birth, miserable adolescence and celebrity career as a courtesan, bareback rider and polka dancer. As a result she was dubbed the consul's 'harlot spouse' and ostracised by society. Despite this, C leste did not avoid the public gaze and continued to employ her literary talents. Her memoirs are of a life spent in the village of St Kilda, the diplomatic and government house circle and the Ballarat gold fields.
Her descriptions of a public hanging, Governor Hotham's 'beer ball' and her own Ball for the Victims of Crimea reveal her as a woman of great energy and wilful temperament.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Melbourne University Press Digital
  • Australia
  • 0522863698
  • 9780522863697

About Jeanne Allen

Dr Patricia Clancy was for many years a senior lecturer in the French Department of the University of Melbourne. She is a winner of the Victorian Premier's Award for Literary Translation. Jeanne Allen taught French at La Trobe and Melbourne universities and has published on the French in colonial Australia.
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