Introduction
‘What’s she like?’
in La Parisienne in cinema
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This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book describes that la Parisienne is a type which exists between art and life, and who exists on the boundary between representation and reality. The figure that emerges from this blurring of art and life is la Parisienne as muse. The book considers the cosmopolitanism of the Parisienne type, in the sense of 'anyone' and 'anywhere', and argues that la Parisienne was conceived not only as a figure of French femininity but of femininity as such. It explores the relationship between la Parisienne, fashion and film. The book shows at la Parisienne as femme fatale within the context of French film noir. Tracing her development in nineteenth-century art and literature, the book examines the way the Parisienne as courtesan is (re)presented in cinema.

La Parisienne in cinema

Between art and life

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