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Pen, print and communication in the eighteenth century$
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Caroline Archer-Parré and Malcolm Dick

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781789622300

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789622300.001.0001

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Performance and Print Culture

Performance and Print Culture

Two Eighteenth-Century Actresses and Their Image Control

(p.107) 7 Performance and Print Culture
Pen, print and communication in the eighteenth century

Joanna Jarvis

Liverpool University Press

The middle of the eighteenth century saw a growing interest in the private lives of public figures and a particular style of press reporting began to shine a spotlight on women who displayed a level of autonomy in their lives. This chapter examines how two actresses attempted to counter some of the negative attention that this created. The newspapers began to highlight perceived social transgressions and new publications appeared based almost entirely on gossip. The power of an image was added to this through the popularity of satirical prints and the ability to publish these began to be exploited by some of the new magazines. Each of the two actresses examined attempted to take control of the creation of their public persona, with varying degrees of success.

Keywords:   Actress, Celebrity, Gossip, Public image, Theatre

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