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James A. Winn Graduate Student Fellow
“Autofocused: The Countess de Castiglione’s Visual Memoir and Photography as Autobiography in Nineteenth-Century France”
This dissertation examines a corpus of photographic portraits of Virginia Oldoini, Countess de Castiglione (1837-1899), produced in Paris between 1856 and 1895 and the culture of related photographic practice by women in France. France was particularly inhospitable to women as photographic practitioners throughout this period, but women were especially active as photographic subjects. This study explores the implications of this position with respect to Castiglione’s oeuvre, photographs of actresses, the legal history of photography, fashion, and the photographic, satiric and popular presses, and reveals the relationship between photography, autobiography, and memoir practices throughout the Second Empire (1852-1870) and the early Third Republic (1870-1940).
Institute for the Humanities
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