The Book of the Courtesans: A Catalogue of Their Virtues

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Broadway Books, 2001 - History - 269 pages
A provocative study of the life and times of the West's first female power brokers explains how courtesans used their liaisons with some of the world's most powerful and celebrated men to give themselves an extraordinary influence, wealth, and freedom in a male-dominated world and offers profiles of these remarkable women, including Veronica Franco, Madame de Pompadour, and Marion Davies.

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User Review  - dk_phoenix - LibraryThing

I read this book out of an immense curiosity about what would make a woman choose to become a courtesan during the 18th and 19th centuries -- especially when she might, in many cases, become a ... Read full review

THE BOOK OF THE COURTESANS: A Catalogue of Their Virtues

User Review  - Kirkus

A joyful celebration of the lives of famous courtesans from early Rome to early Hollywood, with the emphasis on their strengths (and not what some might consider their moral lapses).Like most of ... Read full review


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About the author (2001)

The author of more than twenty books (most recently What Her Body Thought), Susan Griffin has won dozens of awards for her work as a poet, feminist writer, essayist, playwright, and filmmaker. Her book A Chorus of Stones was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. The recipient of an Emmy, a MacArthur Grant, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, she is a frequent contributor to Ms. magazine, the New York Times Book Review, and numerous other publications. She lives in Berkeley, California.

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