Olympe de gouges
Olympe de Gouges, Olivier Blanc
This book is a biography of Marie-Olympe de Gouges, a French woman born in 1748 in Montauban. Olivier Blanc, the author, is a French historian born in 1951. He does research about the XVIIIth century and more particularly about the French Revolution and the status of the diplomats during this period.
This Book, published in 1981, is his first main work, and it allows the author to rehabilitate the figure of Olympe de Gouges, this revolutionary woman who was a pioneer in terms of feminism but also abolitionism.
I chose this book because I wanted to know more about the women way-of-life but also living conditions during the French Revolution. I was really charmed by this book which, even if it is only supposed to deal with Olympe de Gouges' life, allowed me to better understand what it meant to be a woman at that time.
The author opted for a chronological approach as the book deals with the life of this amazing woman from her birth in Montauban in 1748, to her death, the 3 of November in 1793 by decapitation.
I once heard a man saying that "the biography of someone is always the novel of the others" and I find this expression really appropriate to my feelings regarding this book because, by describing the life of this so courageous woman, the author manages to draw a very relevant picture of the France, and more specifically of Paris, during the French Revolution. It was quite surprising because it felt I was actually living this Revolution as it provides a particular point of view, the point of view of an educated woman during one of the most important event of the French History.
O. Blanc introduces Olympe de Gouges as a persevering, courageous, intelligent and talented person. Throughout the book we guess how strong this woman had to be to survive in such a severe context. For instance, she faced many difficulties when she wanted her plays to be performed at the Théâtre Français but she never gave up and