The Allegory of Female Authority: Christine de Pizan's Cité Des Dames

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Cornell University Press, 1991 - Literary Criticism - 290 pages

The first professional female writer, Christine de Pizan (1363-1431) was widowed at age twenty-five and supported herself and her family by enlisting powerful patrons for her poetry. Her Livre de la Cité des Dames (1405) is the earliest European work on women's history by a woman. An allegorical poem that revises masculine traditions, it asserts and defends the authority of women in general and of its author in particular. In this generously illustrated book, Maureen Quilligan provides a persuasive and penetrating interpretation of the Cité.


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About the author (1991)

Maureen Quilligan is Howard E. and Judith Steinberg Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of The Allegory of Female Authority: Christine de Pizan's Cité des Dames.

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