CASANOVA: The Seduction of Europe

CASANOVA: The Seduction of Europe

EDIT BY ILCHMAN, MICKIE, BELL    Book Number: 89389    Product format: Hardback

The name of Casanova conjures up intrigue, clandestine meetings and sex, but his historical importance is far wider. Casanova's memoir covering the middle years of the 18th century includes a significant amount of political and social detail, while his escapades with the law and his creditors (he invented a fraudulent calculating device) give an insight into the seamy side of high society in an international culture. This big and beautiful book contains 12 essays on Casanova and his world, written to accompany a major exhibition mounted in America in 2017-18. Topics include Casanova's Venice, Paris, London and Dresden, his food, his clothes, and his amorous encounters. Tall, olive-skinned and muscular, Casanova promised each of his lovers, some as young as thirteen, that she was the love of his life. The ugly side of 18th century seduction is vividly depicted in Fragonard's painting The Bolt, in which a strongly muscled man holds back his victim while reaching for the bolt on the door that will lock them in together. Arriving in Paris in 1750, Casanova had an introduction to the king's favoured mistress Madame de Pompadour, and in London he was presented to King George III, making friends with the Earl of Pembroke, a notorious libertine. The whole of European society was at his feet, and the book includes discussions of the Arts of Display and the Theatre of Identity in which Casanova was in his element. Casanova's Venice was a city teeming with theatres and masks, and he assumed disguises such as Pierrot for purposes of display and seduction. Spectators watched plays and operas with one eye on the audience, assessing the cut of people's clothes and the quality of the fabric. "The man of the world is wholly his mask" wrote Rousseau. "What he is, is nothing. What he appears to be, is everything." 344pp, timeline, numerous colour reproductions.
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Published price: £35
Bibliophile price: £11.00

Additional product information

ISBN 9780878468423
Browse these categories as well: Historical Biography, History, Erotica, Lascivious Lives

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