Mistresses: A History of the Other Woman

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Overlook, Sep 1, 2011 - History - 528 pages
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She has been called the "kept woman," the "fancy woman," and the "other woman." She exists as both a fictional character and as a flesh-and-blood human being. But who is she, really? Why do women become mistresses, and what is it like to have a private life that is usually also a secret life? Is a mistress merely a wife-in-waiting, or is she the ver y definition of the emancipated, independent female? Elizabeth Abbott intelligently examines the motives and morals of some of history's most infamous and fascinating women, from antiquity to today. Drawing intimate portraits of those who have--by chance, coercion, or choice--assumed this complex role, Mistresses offers a rich blend of personal biography and cultural insight.

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About the author (2011)

Elizabeth Abbott is Research Associate at Trinity College, University of Toronto, and, from 1991 to 2004, was Dean of Women. She is the author of several books, including Sugar and Haiti, also published by Overlook. She lives in Toronto.

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