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Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte: An American Aristocrat in the Early Republic
Two centuries ago, Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte was one of the most legendary women in America. Beautiful, scandalous and forthright, she wed Napoleon’s brother Jerome, bore his child, and had her marriage annulled by the emperor himself. Though “Madame Bonaparte” wielded extraordinary social power at the center of the volatile transatlantic world, her story reminds us of the vulnerability of the American experiment in its infancy and of the active role of women in the debates over society and culture in the early republic.
Charlene Boyer Lewis is an Associate Professor of History and Director of American Studies at Kalamazoo College, Michigan. Her first book, Ladies and Gentlemen on Display: Planter Society at the Virginia Springs, 1790-1860 was published by the University of Virginia in 2001.
Talk begins at 4pm on November 8th in the Reading Room of the Jefferson Library; book selling and signing to follow. The event is free but space is limited. Please register by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org