Rococo republicanism

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'Rococo' conjured various meanings in late nineteenth-century Britain. Applied not only to French art and design of the eighteenth century, the term was also used popularly to describe convoluted ideas or excessively refined forms of cultural expression. Often, though not always, the Rococo carried pejorative associations for Victorian and Edwardian Britons: too aristocratic, too delicate and too feminine. This essay focuses on a striking exception to this bias: the influential writings of art historian Emilia Dilke, Britain's leading scholar of French art. Dilke's popular books on eighteenth-century French art celebrate the Rococo as a manifestation of democratic habits of thinking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-69
Number of pages17
JournalStudies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cultural Studies
  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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