Germaine de Staël

1766 - 1817

photo credits: Wikimedia Commons

country of citizenship:  Republic of GenevaKingdom of France
languages spoken, written or signed:  French

Anne Louise Germaine de Staël-Holstein (French: [an lwiz ʒɛʁmɛn də stal ɔlstajn]; née Necker; 22 April 1766 – 14 July 1817), commonly known as Madame de Staël (French: [madam də stal]), was a prominent woman of letters and political theorist in both Parisian and Genevan intellectual circles. She was the daughter of banker and French finance minister Jacques Necker and Suzanne Curchod, a respected salonhostess. Throughout her life, she held a moderate stance during the tumultuous periods of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic era, persisting until the time of the French Restoration.Her presence at critical events such as the Estates General of 1789 and the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen underscored her engagement in the political discourse of her time. However, Madame de Staël faced exile for extended periods: initially during the Reign of Terror and subsequently due to personal persecution by Napoleon. She claimed to have discerned the tyrannical nature and ambitions of his rule ahead of many others.During her exile, she fostered the Coppet group, a network that spanned across Europe, positioning herself at its heart. Her literary works, emphasizing individuality and passion, left an enduring imprint on European intellectual thought. De Staël's repeated championing of Romanticism contributed significantly to its widespread recognition.While her literary legacy has somewhat faded with time, her critical and historical contributions hold undeniable significance. Though her novels and plays may now be less remembered, the value of her analytical and historical writings remains steadfast. Within her work, de Staël not only advocates for the necessity of public expression but also sounds cautionary notes about its potential hazards. Source: Wikipedia (en)

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