URI Women’s Studies lecture slated for Feb. 19

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KINGSTON, R.I. –January 31, 2008 — Karen de Bruin, assistant professor of French at the University of Rhode Island, will speak Feb. 19 at 4 p.m. in the Galanti Lounge, URI Library, 15 Lippitt Road, Kingston.

Her talk, The “Superior Woman”: Germaine de Staël’s Moral Compass for a Fledgling Republic, is free and open to the public.

de Bruin, a specialist in 18th and early 19th century French literature, has recently completed a dissertation entitled “‘La femme supérieure’ : L’individu, le roman, et la république libre de Germaine de Staël.” In addition to reworking her dissertation into a book, de Bruin is currently investigating the representation of the anti-slavery movement in women’s writings of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Germaine de Staël, novelist, essayist, political thinker and philosopher, was a force in the shaping of liberal and romantic thought in early 19th century. Under the Reign of Terror as well as under Napoleon’s repressive eye, she fought for liberty with courage and unfettering enthusiasm.

The talk will examine one facet of Germaine de Staël’s battle by focusing on the “superior woman” as the organizing principle around which her moral, political and aesthetic vision for a free Republic turns.

de Bruin’s lecture is sponsored by URI’s Women’s Studies Program and is the last in the Dana Shugar Colloquium series.