Almost a man of genius: Clémence Royer, feminism, and by Joy Harvey

Almost a man of genius: Clémence Royer, feminism, and by Joy Harvey

By Joy Harvey

Clemence Royer was once a 19th-century Frenchwoman most likely top identified for generating the 1st French translation of Charles Darwin. even though, her efforts went a lot extra, encompassing anthropology, physics, philosophy, cosmology, and chemistry. during this full-scale biography, Harvey, a technological know-how historian and previous affiliate editor of Cambridge University's Darwin Correspondence undertaking, lines Royer's amazing lifestyles.

A feminist who made lifelong enemies nearly as simply as she made acquaintances, Royer was once by no means in a position to adopt formal, complicated schooling and was once a fabricated from her personal self-study efforts. in simple terms in her previous couple of years used to be she officially well-known through numerous expert societies and presented the French Legion of Honor. Harvey comprises an summary of previous biographical remedies, the textual content of an 1874 verbal exchange on "Women, technological know-how, and the delivery Rate," and wide notes.

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Two events were to change Clémence's life: her father's absence from her life and the 1848 revolution. Her parents' quarrels came to a head. 33Without divorce as an option, the only solution was separation of husband and wife. The aging former captain returned to La Mayenne to live in his native village, where he still had some small property. In many ways, his departure freed Clémence from the direct exposure to her father's unhappiness. His intense, unfulfilled ambitions and his tragic sense of being a failed hero must have been a burden to his family.

I also recognize a debt to Denise Ferembach, former secretary-general of the Société d'Anthropologie de Paris, who many years ago made it possible for me to use the invaluable archives of that society. Thanks are also due to the following libraries and institutions for permission to cite from archival resources or to reproduce illustrations: The Syndics of Cambridge University, Cambridge, England, for materials held in the Darwin Archive, including reproduction of the memorandum from Clémence Royer; Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, for reproduction of the Clémence Royer caricature; Archives Nationales de France, Paris, for materials in the Ministry of Education files, the Victor Considérant archive, and the Jules Simon papers; Bibliothèque Marguerite Durand, Paris, for materials from the Dossier and Correspondence of Cléemence Royer; Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris, for materials in the Francois Lenoir, Ernest Havet, and Félix Nadar archives and permission to reproduce the photograph of Clémence Royer; Préfecture de Police de Paris for permission to cite materials from the Pascal Duprat and Clémence Royer dossiers; Bibliothèque Publique et Universitaire, Geneva, Switzerland, for materials held in the Ernest Naville, Carl Vogt, and René-édouard Chaparède archives.

22 Her comment as an adult illustrates her intense ambition as well as her religious beliefs. 23Her father tried to bring her out of her depression by inviting her to the theater. When she defiantly refused, he slapped her face, the only time he struck her. 24 This period of preadolescent depression seems to have lingered for another six months. She recovered only when her family, missing the excitement of the capital, returned to Paris in 1843. Now thirteen, she saw the Tuileries and the other places where she had played as a child.

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