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Germaine de StaëlA Political Portrait$
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Biancamaria Fontana

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169040

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169040.001.0001

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Interpreting the Opinion of the Majority of the Nation (1789–91)

Interpreting the Opinion of the Majority of the Nation (1789–91)

(p.11) Chapter 1 Interpreting the Opinion of the Majority of the Nation (1789–91)
Germaine de Staël

Biancamaria Fontana

Princeton University Press

This chapter illustrates how, on her return to Paris, Germaine de Staël had found an unstable situation, marked by growing unrest in the provinces and by increasingly volatile, ever-shifting political allegiances. She had also rapidly become the object of vicious attacks in the press, emanating principally from royalist circles. The chapter cites Staël's article, which appeared in the Journal des indépendants, and explores how it reflects the preoccupations that dominated this particular phase in her public engagement: the ambition to persuade the scattered constitutional monarchists to pursue a single, coherent policy; the aspiration to see the same divided, quarrelsome factions turn into something resembling an organized party; the search for a credible leadership; and expressing the position of the moderate majority in the assembly.

Keywords:   Germaine de Staël, political allegiances, royalist circles, Journal des indépendants, constitutional monarchists, organized party

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