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Sex and the City of Ladies: Rewriting history with Cleopatra, Lucrezia Borgia and Catherine the Great

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The bestselling author and historian Lisa Hilton picks up the mythical 'City of Ladies' where the medieval writer Christine de Pisan left off, continuing a conversation about gender and greatness that began more than six hundred years ago. In 1450 Christine de Pisan took up the pen to defend her maligned sex. Her book, The City of Ladies, was built around preserving women' The bestselling author and historian Lisa Hilton picks up the mythical 'City of Ladies' where the medieval writer Christine de Pisan left off, continuing a conversation about gender and greatness that began more than six hundred years ago. In 1450 Christine de Pisan took up the pen to defend her maligned sex. Her book, The City of Ladies, was built around preserving women's reputations from the slights and misunderstandings of history. In it the author is visited by three spirits – Justice, Rectitude and Reason – who guide her in sifting through countless lives, in search of worthy citizens.  Nearly 600 years later, the historian and novelist Lisa Hilton picks up the book and promptly falls asleep, only to be visited by three great women from history: Cleopatra, Lucrezia Borgia and Catherine the Great. And they aren't happy. Having found themselves barred from the original 'City of Ladies', they want to know why. And isn't it time, they ask, for a new author to take up the pen? What follows is a reassessment of the past, in which deeds and reputations, rumours and reality are held up to the light, and history is wrested back from the distortions of misogyny.


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The bestselling author and historian Lisa Hilton picks up the mythical 'City of Ladies' where the medieval writer Christine de Pisan left off, continuing a conversation about gender and greatness that began more than six hundred years ago. In 1450 Christine de Pisan took up the pen to defend her maligned sex. Her book, The City of Ladies, was built around preserving women' The bestselling author and historian Lisa Hilton picks up the mythical 'City of Ladies' where the medieval writer Christine de Pisan left off, continuing a conversation about gender and greatness that began more than six hundred years ago. In 1450 Christine de Pisan took up the pen to defend her maligned sex. Her book, The City of Ladies, was built around preserving women's reputations from the slights and misunderstandings of history. In it the author is visited by three spirits – Justice, Rectitude and Reason – who guide her in sifting through countless lives, in search of worthy citizens.  Nearly 600 years later, the historian and novelist Lisa Hilton picks up the book and promptly falls asleep, only to be visited by three great women from history: Cleopatra, Lucrezia Borgia and Catherine the Great. And they aren't happy. Having found themselves barred from the original 'City of Ladies', they want to know why. And isn't it time, they ask, for a new author to take up the pen? What follows is a reassessment of the past, in which deeds and reputations, rumours and reality are held up to the light, and history is wrested back from the distortions of misogyny.

51 review for Sex and the City of Ladies: Rewriting history with Cleopatra, Lucrezia Borgia and Catherine the Great

  1. 4 out of 5

    Илияна Димитрова

    Доста интересно.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Regina Andreassen

    Juvenile

  3. 4 out of 5

    Iris

    What a wallop! In a few dozen pages, Hilton illuminates the Renaissance, decimates contemporary literary scholarship’s gender essentialism, and tosses in some cocktail chatter-worthy facts about the loves of four oversexualized, ultimately underestimated historical figures: Christine de Pisan, Cleopatra, Lucrezia Borgia, and Catherine the Great. This delightful and powerful tome is just right for the distracted reading breaks in coronatime.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Cameron McLeod

    Fun, creative, marvellous.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Clarissa

    An easy read (short too, which is great for getting back into reading during the pandemic) Lisa delves into the lives of some fascinating historical figures and challenges the thinking around them. For example: Catherine the great conducted herself (sexually speaking) in a way that for a man would have been more than acceptable and not at all the focus. Whereas, because she was a female, people refer to her as that Russian Queen who slept with a lot of people rather than the great ruler she was c An easy read (short too, which is great for getting back into reading during the pandemic) Lisa delves into the lives of some fascinating historical figures and challenges the thinking around them. For example: Catherine the great conducted herself (sexually speaking) in a way that for a man would have been more than acceptable and not at all the focus. Whereas, because she was a female, people refer to her as that Russian Queen who slept with a lot of people rather than the great ruler she was considered to be.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Dolphin

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kate: The Quick and the Read

  8. 4 out of 5

    Elna

  9. 5 out of 5

    Alice

  10. 4 out of 5

    L Timmel

  11. 4 out of 5

    Marianne Sæland

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sophie

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nikki

  15. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  16. 4 out of 5

    Bridget

  17. 5 out of 5

    Dóra

  18. 5 out of 5

    Dana Jobling

  19. 5 out of 5

    Daniella Gonzalez

  20. 5 out of 5

    Milly

  21. 4 out of 5

    Sarah AF

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jenni

  23. 4 out of 5

    Uzay

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ema

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sophie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Holiday

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ash Beckwith

  28. 4 out of 5

    James Harrison

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ty

  30. 5 out of 5

    Peter Biddlecombe

  31. 4 out of 5

    Joy

  32. 4 out of 5

    Victoria Price

  33. 5 out of 5

    ConstantReader

  34. 4 out of 5

    AnnaG

  35. 5 out of 5

    Rita

  36. 5 out of 5

    Diane

  37. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Drake

  38. 4 out of 5

    Linda

  39. 4 out of 5

    Lady Chelsea

  40. 5 out of 5

    Jo

  41. 4 out of 5

    Leslie W.

  42. 5 out of 5

    Denise

  43. 5 out of 5

    Atanasije Svilar

  44. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer Willis

  45. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  46. 5 out of 5

    Rhian Pritchard

  47. 4 out of 5

    THOMAS RYASKO

  48. 4 out of 5

    Olivia Lauren

  49. 5 out of 5

    Leila

  50. 5 out of 5

    Linda

  51. 5 out of 5

    Kaja

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