The Painted Girls
Publication Date: January 2013
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The belle epoque was not particularly belle if you were poor and female â?? like the young girl who modeled for Edgar Degas' famous sculpture, The Little Dancer, Aged 14. A new novel by Cathy Marie Buchanan tells the story of that girl, ballet student Marie van Goethem. More at NPR.org
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- If I had a bit of nerve, I would tell him I want to look pretty instead of worn out. I want to be dancing instead of resting my aching bones. I want to be on the stage, like a real ballet girl, instead of in the practice room, even if it is not yet true. Marie thinks this while pondering the paintings in Degas’s workshop. What kind of art is Degas interested in making? Why are his innovations so important for the history of art? Do you see empathy or hostility toward the dancers in his artworks?