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Posts Tagged ‘Duchess of Devonshire’

Ralph Fiennes, out of costume

Ralph Fiennes, out of costume

Painting of the 5th Duke of Devonshire

Painting of the 5th Duke of Devonshire

As a devoted fan of the real Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, and as someone who enjoyed the movie “The Duchess” very much, I have definite opinions on all of the characters, and on the portrayals in the movie.

I decided that I am still a little frustrated that Ralph Fiennes portrayed William, the fifth Duke of Devonshire, in such a sympathetic light. Though, in thinking about it, at least Fiennes showed the flaws in the Duke’s character, and did not do what would have been tragic – make the Duke seem charming or especially sexually appealing, after all the Duke’s womanizing and emotional abuse of his wife.

It is also disappointing that the portrayal of the Duke is up for so many awards, when it is Georgiana who should have been (and was in some measure)  “a light burning at the center of the film”, as commentary on the DVD edition notes. Perhaps because I had read the book by Amanda Foreman, I still saw Georgiana’s light as the center of the film. Indeed, the story would probably have not been told if it were not for her flair, her fame and her fashion sense. And, contrary to some critics, I believe that Keira Knightley’s portrayal of Georgiana was wonderful. Knightley was able to portray the character and emotions in the range of an innocent young bride of 17-years-old, to an aristocratic woman having a passionate affair, to a mother and wife who has come to terms with her place in life. (more…)

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Found this wonderful drawing of over a dozen different 18th century hairstyles. It includes many that might have been warn by Georgina, Duchess of Devonshire. You must click to see the up-do with the sailing ship on top:

Post at The Duchess of Devonshire’s Gossip Guide to the 18th century

Here is the picture. (DofD Gossip Guide is a fun site to visit, though!)

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Please share your thoughts on this topic at the comments section. Hearing what you think is a lot of the reason I created this blog.

What are the life lessons that you have learned (as a woman, as a person, as a feminist) which might have helped Georgiana the Duchess of Devonshire to have a happier life, and reached more of her potential? (more…)

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This is a modified version of an old essay of mine called:

Living the Skit: I am Tina Fey as Sarah Palin

I am a woman activist who has run for office inside my party to try (unsuccessfully) to win the nomination for Lieutenant Governor, and in the regular election as a write-in for various offices, and on the ballot for Suffolk County Legislator.

I know that I am not as funny as Tina Fey. And, I hope that I am not much like Sarah Palin, since: I believe in women’s reproductive rights; my energy plan does not include nuclear power or drilling in the ANWAR; and I believe in non-violence so much I am against the War in Iraq and the War in Afghanistan. So, I cannot claim too much similarity to either woman.

Though, when Tina Fey puts on her Sarah Palin persona, somehow, there I am in the middle of things.

I think that one reason for the resonance I feel is that Tina Fey’s skits, and the way she portrays Sarah Palin, are a way to explore what it means to be a woman politician. Tina Fey is “Everywoman The Politican.” Her comedy is based on the struggle of figuring out how does a woman hold herself when she is trying to carry an air of leadership and authority, while at the same time, trying to win over voters? Especially when some of those voters hold the patriarchal expectation that a woman should be feminine, and might even hold the expectation that a woman should not be the leader. (more…)

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Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire is an ancestor of the new royal baby, The Prince of Cambridge.

More info about Georgiana: here
Web page for “The Duke and Duchess of Peace”: here.

Lady Georgiana Spencer is an important figure in political history. She was born in 1757 and died in 1806. She married, at the age of 17, and became Georgiana, The Duchess of Devonshire. She had an influential role in many key, political events, and in the shaping of the early Whig Party. Georgiana saw the French Revolution through the eyes of an English aristocrat, and as a friend of Marie Antoinette.

Amanda Foreman wrote “Georgiana the Duchess of Devonshire”, Modern Library Press, 2001. And, in 2008, a movie was made based closely on that book, though, with the movie focusing on one aspect and time period from the full biography. Amanda Foreman was a consultant on the movie. Though the movie was critiqued for saying so in some advertising, Georgiana is, in fact, the great-great-great-great aunt of Diana, Princess of Wales. And, the lives and work of these two women have eerie similarities. (more…)

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My first blogpost is a reprint of my “About” page…

The Basics

I have always enjoyed biographies of women in history. As an elementary school student, I remember doing a report on a biography of Susan B. Anthony, and also being very interested in the life of Helen Keller. In high school, I read a biography about Catherine the Great of Russia, which fascinated me. As reflected in the blog title, my current fascination is Georgiana, The Duchess of Devonshire.

I am creating this site so that women may discuss women in history, and ways that their lives may have been different, if only those historical women had: a little more freedom, the right to own property, or had insight from other women, whose later writings empowered and educated women about ourselves.

Please do post a comment. Or, suggest a book. Or, leave a message about how you think Georgiana’s life could have been different if only she would have known…what?

More thoughts… (more…)

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