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Showing posts from 2009

Fall Chapter Meeting October 3, 2009 (UConn)

AMS-NE Fall Chapter Meeting Saturday, October 3, 2009 University of Connecticut Presenters and Abstracts (Archived) Hilary Poriss, "Prima Donnas and the Performance of Altruism" If biographers of nineteenth- and twentieth-century prima donnas are to be believed, the ranks of famous divas were once filled with an abundance of philanthropists willing to donate huge sums to worthy causes. A comparison of their accounts, however, sheds doubt on this image, for the same story continually reappears: encountering a wretched pauper (typically an orphan or an old man), the diva instinctually recognizes their intense inner beauty, and in an emotional frenzy, hands them whatever is needed (money, clothes, and funds for housing and education). That variations of this narrative appeared regularly throughout biographies of Malibran, Lind, Pasta, and Grisi, as well as many others, indicates that there is far more to this story than meets the eye. In this study,