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The Temperamental Nude: Class, Medicine and Representation in eighteenth-century France - Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment 2010:05 (Paperback)
  • The Temperamental Nude: Class, Medicine and Representation in eighteenth-century France - Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment 2010:05 (Paperback)
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The Temperamental Nude: Class, Medicine and Representation in eighteenth-century France - Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment 2010:05 (Paperback)

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£65.00
Paperback 319 Pages / Published: 07/05/2010
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Although discredited by seventeenth-century scientists, temperament theory - which attributed human moods to the interaction of four distinct bodily fluids or `humours' - was refashioned a century later to create a moral and physiological typology of social classes. This revival was the work of leading physiologists of the time, but the impact of their thinking extended far beyond medicine to embrace the history of ideas and, in particular, the representation of the human body in art.

In this richly-illustrated book, Tony Halliday argues that matters of artistic representation were closely connected to medical and political discourses throughout the later eighteenth century, especially during the successive phases of the French Revolution. He explores the effects of the reworked theory of humours on visual representation, focusing on:

the interaction of art and politics in debates about the visual portrayal of the `new citizen'Antique notions of an ideal body and their transformation in contemporary artthe concept of a new `muscular' temperament, and its social, political and artistic implicationsthe impact of certain works of art such as Bouchardon's statue of Cupid fashioning a bow from the club of Herculesand the unease they revealed in late eighteenth-century Europe about the relationship of character, appearance and occupation.

Publisher: Liverpool University Press
ISBN: 9780729409940
Number of pages: 319
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
In eight abundantly illustrated chapters, Tony Halliday endeavours to revisit and revise the lines along which to read the medical and sociopolitical discourse as well as the motif of the male nude in eighteenth-century French art.
- French Studies, vol. 66, issue 3

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