“Figures of Ill Repute brilliantly explores the prostitute’s embodiment of the threat of female sexuality and her subjection to artistic strategies of containment. [Bernheimer’s] compelling readings of Balzac, Manet, and Zola and his provocative discussions of Flaubert and Degas advance debates about sexuality and representation and refocus the history of modernity.”—Jonathan Culler
“[A]n important work. . . . Shifting nimbly from close textual analysis to biographical or scientific information, from psychoanalytic speculation to anecdotes of social history, this original, exciting study offers . . . a truly liberal view of the seriousness and importance of all our representational activities.”—Leo Bersani
About the Author
Charles Bernheimer is Professor of Romance Languages and Comparative Literature at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of Flaubert and Kafka and coeditor of In Dora’s Case.