I'm pleased to announce the release, in both print and e-book editions, of Resistance and Transformation: On Fairy Tales, by Mari Ness, as the seventy-eighth volume in our Conversation Pieces Series. It's available now from Aqueduct Press at www.aqueductpress.com.
A group of French aristocrats, trapped by their culture and gender, wanted to speak out against the regime and the king. But they could not, for that king was Louis XIV.
And so they turned to fairy tales. In this collection of fourteen essays, Mari Ness explores the lives and tales of these remarkable writers who used fairy tales to subtly critique – and in a few cases, support – the absolutist rule of Louis XIV. They include the scandalous Henriette Julie de Murat, imprisoned for debauchery, and rumored to wear men's clothing; Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de la Force, imprisoned for writing impious poetry; and Madame d'Aulnoy, who spent years of her life in exile from her beloved country, but still insisted on contributing to French literature. Told with wit and humor, the essays help set beloved fairy tales into their historical and cultural context. A must read for fairy tale lovers and anyone interested in how words can be shaped into acts of resistance.