The Decadent Republic of Letters

The Decadent Republic of Letters revises the longstanding view of decadence as a movement defined by escapism and sociopolitical withdrawal. The book argues that decadent writers and artists from Charles Baudelaire to Aubrey Beardsley addressed a cosmopolitan audience united by taste rather than language, geography, or national identity.

The Decadent Republic of Letters
Taste, Politics, and Cosmopolitan Community from Baudelaire to Beardsley

Matthew Potolsky

2012 | 240 pages | Cloth $69.95
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Table of Contents

Introduction. "Workers of the Final Hour"
Chapter 1. "Partisans Inconnus": Aesthetic Community and the Public Good in Baudelaire
Chapter 2. The Politics of Appreciation: Gautier and Swinburne on Baudelaire
Chapter 3. Golden Books: Pater, Huysmans, and Decadent Canonization
Chapter 4. A Mirror for Teachers: Decadent Pedagogy and Public Education
Chapter 5. A Republic of (Nothing but) Letters: Some Versions of Decadent Community
Postscript. Public Works: Stéphane Mallarmé's "Le Tombeau de Charles Baudelaire"