Dreaming in French: The Paris Years of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Susan Sontag, and Angela Davis (Hardcover)
The Paris Years of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Susan Sontag, and Angela Davis
University of Chicago Press, 9780226424385, 289pp.
Publication Date: April 2, 2012
About the Author
Praise For Dreaming in French: The Paris Years of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Susan Sontag, and Angela Davis…
"The #1 nonfiction book to look out for this spring."
"An enduring group profile of three influential yet completely different American women, for each of whom Paris played a short but transformative role, over three tumultuous decades. . . . The much-admired Kaplan focuses sharply on three women of successive generations, providing a keen feminist-cultural picture of Paris’s enduring, if varied, impact."
"A fascinating group portrait of three different women from three different generations whose trajectories nevertheless converge in one surprising yet significant place: Paris. In this lively, original biographie à trois, Alice Kaplan shows how time spent living in the French capital and learning about its culture gave each of these sui generis heroines 'her own ideas of what counted'—and how those ideas in turn became an indelible part of the American political and cultural landscape."
-Caroline Weber, author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Re
"An eloquent, brilliant, and often moving portrayal of three remarkable women whose personal and intellectual engagement with France transformed them, and by extension America as well. These intimate narratives of Jaqueline Kennedy, Susan Sontag, and Angela Davis feel not only vital, but also necessary to our understanding of their moral, aesthetic and political development, and just as importantly, to our understanding of each as a remarkable, flawed, and complicated human being."
-Dinaw Mengestu, author of How to Read the Air
"Alice Kaplan's triple portrait of three iconic mid-century American women, dazzles beyond our evergreen fascination with the wildly disparate lives of Jacqueline Bouvier, Susan Sontag and Angela Davis. Her lens--the 'junior year abroad'--proves to be a brilliantly revealing cultural magnifying glass. With her meticulous scholarship, a novelist's gimlet eye for detail and the sheer grace of her writing, Kaplan has given us an original and now essential model of that enduring American narrative--the American in Paris."
"Superbly perceptive. . . . Kaplan is a master at . . . selecting just the right aspect of everyday experience to illuminate an important point she wants to make. . . . Some books are well-written on a sentence-by-sentence basis; you leaf back through the pages to find you've underscored choice lines. Dreaming in French is the sort of book where you (well, I) draw vertical lines next to entire paragraphs. Kaplan produces some exquisite lines, yes, but she is positively incandescent on the level of thoughts and observations."
"Lively. . . . The links Kaplan makes between these cultures and these women deliver fascinating insight to the conditions and changes surging through not only these particular lives, but those of Americans in general."
"Gossip is one of the key pleasures--but far from the only one--to be found in Alice Kaplan’s absorbing new book. . . . It's a book, to some extent, about the desirability of abandoning or attenuating one’s Americanness."
"Dreaming in French is, in essence a collection of three short, stand-alone biographies. But Kaplan is a talented historian, journalist, and storyteller, and so she's crafted a book greater than the sum of its parts. . . . An informative, well-written work of biographical nonfiction."
"An elegant and entertaining work."
"In this well-written triple biographical bite of a magical time in the lives of three ambitious women, Alice Kaplan plumbs the cultural vein that enticed a debutante, an intellectual and a political activist to the same smoky streets of Paris."--Examiner