Vénus Noire: Black Women and Colonial Fantasies in Nineteenth-Century France
Robin Mitchell (Author)
University of Georgia Press
May 01, 2020
6.0 X 9.0 X 0.53 inches | 0.57 pounds
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About the Author
ROBIN MITCHELL is associate professor of history at the California State University, Channel Islands.
Based on extensive research in primary sources, Vénus Noire is a groundbreaking study of how, despite their relatively few numbers in metropolitan France, black women were weighted with powerful symbolic valence. French writers, scientists, and artists all depicted black women as sexualized, mysterious, and uncontrollable "others," thus burdening actual black women with living their lives in tension with these stereotypes. Mitchell brings to life the biographies of three particularly well-documented black women, while deconstructing artistic and literary icons of many more, to show how French discourse produced race and gender from the Revolution and Napoleonic era through the Second Empire. Haunting, breathtaking, and riveting, this book will linger in your mind long after you close its pages.--Sue Peabody "author of Madeleine's Children: Family, Freedom, Secrets, and Lies in France's Indian Ocean Colonies "