Germaine de Stael

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the life and impact of Germaine de Stael (1766-1817) who Byron praised as Europe’s greatest living writer, and was at the heart of intellectual and literary life in the France of revolution and of Napoleon. As well as attracting and inspiring others in her salon, she wrote novels, plays. literary criticism, political essays, and poems and developed the ideas behind Romanticism. She achieved this while regularly exiled from the Paris in which she was born, having fallen out with Napoleon who she opposed, becoming a towering figure in the history of European ideas.

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  • Catriona Seth 5 episodes
    Marshal Foch Professor of French Literature at the University of Oxford
  • Alison Finch No other episodes
    Professor Emerita of French Literature at the University of Cambridge
  • Katherine Astbury 4 episodes
    Associate Professor and Reader in French Studies at the University of Warwick

Reading list

  • The Birth of European Romanticism: Truth and Propaganda in Stael's 'De l'Allemagne', 1810-1813
    John Claireborne Isbell (Cambridge University Press, 1994) Google Books →
  • Romanticism: A Very Short Introduction
    Michael Ferber (Oxford University Press, 2010) Google Books →
  • French Literature: A Cultural History
    Alison Finch (Polity, 2010) Google Books →
  • Women's Writing in Nineteenth-Century France
    Alison Finch (Cambridge University Press, 2000) Google Books →
  • Germaine de Stael: A Political Portrait
    Biancamaria Fontana (Princeton University Press, 2016) Google Books →
  • A History of Women in the West (vol 4): _Emerging Feminism from Revolution to World War
    Genevieve Fraisse and Michelle Perrot (eds.) (Belknap Press, 1993) Google Books →
  • Juniper Hall: An English Refuge from the French Revolution
    Linda Kelly (Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1991) Google Books →
  • A History of Modern French Literature
    Christopher Prendergast (ed.) (Princeton University Press, 2017) Google Books →
  • Delphine
    Germaine de Stael (trans. Avriel H. Goldberger) (Northern Illinois University Press, 1995)
  • Corinne or Italy
    Germaine de Stael (trans. Sylvia Raphael) (Oxford University Press, 2008) Google Books →
  • Considerations on the Principal Events of the French Revolution
    Germaine de Stael (ed. Aurelian Craiutu) (Liberty Fund, 2008) Google Books →
  • Madame de Stael
    Maria Fairweather (Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2005) Google Books →
  • Germaine de Stael & Benjamin Constant: A Dual Biography
    Renee Winegarten (Yale University Press, 2008) Google Books →

Related episodes

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Auto-category: 840 (French literature)

Hello (First sentence from this episode) Hello, Germaine de Stael was born in Paris in 1766, where her father was finance minister to Louis XVI and her mother held Dazzling Salon.