Seduction Stories in Seventeenth‐Century Literary History

Toni Bowers

in Force or Fraud

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199592135
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725340 | DOI:
Seduction Stories in Seventeenth‐Century Literary History

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This chapter considers the genealogy of seduction stories prior to the late seventeenth century, demonstrating that female sexual agency emerges early as a peculiarly complex and generative problem. The late seventeenth-century emergence of the terms “whig,” “tory,” and “jacobite”—as both partisan labels and descriptors of ideological sensibilities—is considered, along with various connotations and points of inadequacy within those terms. The chapter concludes by arguing that seduction topoi resonated with special power for “new tory” subjects struggling to reconcile ideological principles with irresistible practices of complicity and collusion.

Keywords: seduction story; Héloïse and Abelard; Marie‐Madeleine de Lafayette, La Princesse de Clèves (1678); seduction topoi; whig; tory; jacobite; sexual agency

Chapter.  11946 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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