Lecture with Irene Zanini-Cordi, Associate Professor of Italian Studies, Florida State University
Salons were performative sites of sociability and cultural production. There, trends were set, and musical and literary stars were born, or ruined. The fame of Liszt, Bellini and Chopin, just to name a few, was made in the salons. Presiding over these powerful social-networking hubs were the charms and wits of the salonnières.
In this talk, we will reveal the dynamics of power within the salons and their cultural outcomes. After tracing the origins of the salons and dis- cussing their rituals and functions, we will examine the role of the power- ful women that animated them. As cultural mediators, supporters of the arts, and trend-setters, they were so influential that they often dictated public taste in fashion, literature and music.