The Chevalier D'eon And His Worlds: Gender, Espionage and Politics in the Eighteenth Century by Simon BurrowsThe Chevalier D'eon And His Worlds: Gender, Espionage and Politics in the Eighteenth Century by Simon Burrows

The Chevalier D'eon And His Worlds: Gender, Espionage and Politics in the Eighteenth Century

EditorSimon Burrows, Jonathan Conlin, Russell Goulbourne

Hardcover | April 23, 2010

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Cross-dressing author, envoy, soldier and spy Charles d'Eon de Beaumont's unusual career fascinated his contemporaries and continues to attract historians, novelists, playwrights, filmmakers, image makers, cultural theorists and those concerned with manifestations of the extraordinary. D'Eon's significance as a historical figure was already being debated more than 45 years before his death.


Not surprisingly, such sensational material has attracted the attention of enthusiasts, scholars and literateurs to 'the strange case of the chevalier d'Eon'. He has also attracted the attention of psychologists and sexologists, and for most of the last century his gender transformation has been viewed through a Freudian lens. His cross-dressing, it was usually assumed, must have a psychosexual explanation. Until the second half of the twentieth century the terms 'Eonist' and 'Eonism' were the standard English words for transvestites and transvestism respectively, but 'Eonism' was also, thanks to Havelock Ellis, widely regarded as a psychological condition or compulsion. However, in the mid-twentieth century, new ideas about gender-identity disorders led to d'Eon being redefined not as a transvestite, but a transsexual - a person who considers their sex to have been 'misassigned'.

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The essays in this collection contribute to d'Eon's rehabilitation as a figure worthy of scholarly attention and display a variety of disciplinary approaches. Drawing on new research into d'Eon's life, this volume offers original and nuanced readings of how a gender identity could come to be negotiated over time.

Simon Burrows is Professor of Modern European History at the University of Leeds. His many publications include A King's Ransom (Continuum 2010), and The Chevalier d'Eon and His Worlds edited with Jonathan Conlin, Russell Goulbourne and Valerie Mainz (Continuum 2010). Jonathan Conlin is Senior Lecturer in Modern History at the Un...
Title:The Chevalier D'eon And His Worlds: Gender, Espionage and Politics in the Eighteenth CenturyFormat:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 9.48 × 6.42 × 1.03 inPublished:April 23, 2010Publisher:BloomsburyLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0826422780

ISBN - 13:9780826422781

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Table of Contents

The Chevalier d'Eon: Media Star, News Manipulation, Cultural Politics and the Making of an Eighteenth-Century Celebrity

'Faire le Wilkes': The Chevalier d'Eon and the Wikites, 1762-1775

¿Beaumarchais and d'Eon: An Affair to Remember

¿Je suis n¿ a Tonnerre

A 'monster of metamorphosis': Reassessing the Chevalier/Chevali¿re d'Eon's Change of Gender

'La Vie militaire, politique et priv¿e de Melle d'Eon' (1779), ou comment faire d'un r¿cit¿ de vie une enterprise de manipulation

The Maiden of Tonnerre: Vicissitudes of the Chevalier and Chevali¿re d'Eon

Dressing d'Eon

The Chevalier d'Eon and his Several Identities: Representations of d'Eon in English caricatures of the 1770s and 1780s

An Eighteenth-Century French Commonwealthman? Exploring the Context of the Chevalier d'Eon's Translation of Marchamont Nedham's 'The Excellence of a <_st13a_state _w3a_st="on"> <_st13a_place _w3a_st="on">Free State '

Traditions and Discontinuities: d'Eon and Choisy

The Chevalier d'Eon, Rousseau, and New Ideas for Gender, Sex and the Self in the late Eighteenth Century

Louvet's 'Les Amours du Chevalier de Faublas': Sexual, Political and Textual Imbroglios

Le Mythe des Amazones au XVIIIe si¿cle at la l¿gende du chevalier d'Eon

Editorial Reviews

The editors of this book have brought together 15 essays...shedding light on various aspects of the chevalier's life and on the social, political and cultural contexts he/she moved in... The book offers a captivating and highly readable perspective on eighteenth-century French society, looking at issues which are often neglected or under-researched... What is remarkable is the way in which many of the authors use cultural theories in a way that not only helps to shed light on the history of eighteenth-century France but also contributes to the problematization of some issues of cultural theory. From this angle, the volume represents an important meeting point of different disciplines... d'Eon is intelligently placed in his own cultural and social context so that the book represents an important contribution to the history of the period more generally. Its relevance clearly goes beyond the study of d'Eon.