IN THE REVIEW

The Lost Art

Cartesian Women: Versions and Subversions of Rational Discourse in the Old Regime

by Erica Harth

Watteau's Painted Conversations: Art, Literature, and Talk in Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century France

by Mary Vidal
In his Discours de la méthode (1637) Descartes said that he chose to write in French rather than in Latin in order to reach “those who employ nothing but their pure natural reason.” We are justified in supposing that among such readers the philosopher included women, since they were not …

Conqueror of Paris

A Woman, a Man, and Two Kingdoms: The Story of Madame d'Epinay and the Abbæ Galiani

by Francis Steegmuller

Ferdinando Galiani, Louise d'Epinay Correspondance Vol. I (1769–1770)

by (The Correspondance will comprise five volumes to appear annually.), edited by Georges Dulac and Daniel Maggetti
In 1766 the Paris of the Enlightenment welcomed the Milanese political philosopher Cesare Beccaria with both reverence and curiosity. All the philosophes were anxious to meet the author of Of Crimes and Punishments (1764), his celebrated treatise on judicial law that condemned torture and the death penalty. All the same, …