Reader's Encyclopedia

Staël, Mme de (born Anne Louise Germaine Necker, 1766 - 1817)

Swiss-French belle-lettrist. Staël's father, Jacques Necker, was the French minister of finance; her husband, the Baron de Staël-Holstein, was Swedish ambassador to France. She is known for her celebrated salons, which were attended by leading literary and political figures, for her charm, talent for conversation, vigorous mind, and for her influence on romanticism in France. Among her works are Lettres sur les écrits et caractére de Jean -Jacques Rousseau (1788); De l'influence des passions (1796); Essai sur les fictions (1795); and Considérations sur la Révolution française (1818). Delphine and Corinne are considered by some critics to be the first "modern" feminist, psychological, romantic novels; they anticipate the works of George Sand. In her De la littérature considérée dans ses rapports avec les institutions sociales (1800), Mme de Staël attempted, among other things, to establish that literature develops qualitatively as social and political freedom increase. It was unanimously criticized because of its superficiality and simplistic literary prophecies. In De l'Allemagne, suppressed by Napoleon in 1811, but later published in London in 1813, she makes invidious comparisons between German and French culture and politics; in it she introduced German romanticism into France, thereby influencing greatly European thought and letters.

Mme de Staël was an outspoken critic of Napoleon, and was exiled from Paris several times. She traveled in Germany, Russia, England, Switzerland, and Sweden -- hence her cosmopolitan attitude toward literature and politics. Her marriage was disappointing, and she had several love affairs. She inspired, in part, her Don - Juan - like lover, the Swiss novelist Benjamin Constant de Rebecque, to write his Adolphe. Her influence has been found in the works of Lamartine, Victor Hugo, and Charles Nodier.

0111011000100101001010011010010011101011010011011110101100000000011110010000101110001110001010011000111000011111101101101111111000
0110010101001011110010011110110011101100111111111001000100010000000010011000101101111001000100101010101101100011010101000111100111
1111100101011010101000010000100011010011010110100111011110011011111001101011000010100010111111011100001001010010101011011101010011
1000011111010100010011110001111010101110110000000010100110001011000101100010100110111001111101011101110000101111000001101101000000
0011000100101101111000001010011101001110010100010011100011111010110101100100111001111100000111011001011001001101101111011001000001
0101110010011100011000100010110111110000111101011000101101110000001110101001101010111100010101111000001000010101100010110001011111
1100110010100010001100110111011101110101111101010001001100100011111111000100100001101011000101000110100011011101100000000101011001
0110011110100111010100011001001011001111100101100111101000010000111000110110000010100000001011000110001110100110011010111010001001
1000100001100001011011100000010001111100100001011110100000111010000111001010010000100000000100110010011000010111011010001011010010
0100101000000010100011110000111011101110111010100111110111001111011101101001110110111111110111001000100110100111000110101000001111
0101010011010001001101001111001101010000001001111001111100000111101011100110011111110111110101101000001001001100100101101001100110
0011111100111011100100011101001100110011100011101001010111001001101110010111110010100101000101010110011110000001010011100111001010
0110100111100000110100101101110101010110100101011000011101111110110101010011101110000110101101110110000011010000110101011111111110
0111001010100010011110000011111001010011001110011000110110101111001100010010101100111111000000111100011001100010011110100000000110