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The European MetropolisParis and Nineteenth-Century Irish Women Novelists$
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Matthew L. Reznicek

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781942954323

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781942954323.001.0001

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The Novice in the City

The Novice in the City

Sydney Owenson and the Bildung of Metropolitan Economics

(p.25) Chapter One The Novice in the City
The European Metropolis

Matthew L. Reznicek

Liverpool University Press

This chapter explores two competing representations of Paris in an early- and a late-career novel by Sydney Owenson. It argues that, in The Novice of Saint Dominick, Paris functions as a conservative site of socialization, while in The O’Briens and the O’Flahertys, the French capital becomes a site of liberal reforms and social mobility.In the earlier novel, Owenson focuses on the dangers of a woman’s involvement in metropolitan economics in order to enforce her submission to a masculine authority through the use of debts and cosmopolitan understandings of the market. The later novel uses the Paris Opera house to highlight the development of urban literacy.

Keywords:   Sydney Owenson, The Novice of Saint Dominick, The O’Briens and the O’Flahertys, Cosmopolitanism, Social Mobility

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