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The Discovery of Jeanne Baret: A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe #2019

The Discovery of Jeanne Baret A Story of Science the High Seas and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe The year was Eminent botanist Philibert Commerson had just been appointed to a grand new expedition the first French circumnavigation of the world As the ships official naturalist Commerson woul

  • Title: The Discovery of Jeanne Baret: A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe
  • Author: Glynis Ridley
  • ISBN: 9780307463531
  • Page: 103
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Discovery of Jeanne Baret: A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe By Glynis Ridley, The year was 1765 Eminent botanist Philibert Commerson had just been appointed to a grand new expedition the first French circumnavigation of the world As the ships official naturalist, Commerson would seek out resources medicines, spices, timber, food that could give the French an edge in the ever accelerating race for empire Jeanne Baret, Commerson s young mistressThe year was 1765 Eminent botanist Philibert Commerson had just been appointed to a grand new expedition the first French circumnavigation of the world As the ships official naturalist, Commerson would seek out resources medicines, spices, timber, food that could give the French an edge in the ever accelerating race for empire Jeanne Baret, Commerson s young mistress and collaborator, was desperate not to be left behind She disguised herself as a teenage boy and signed on as his assistant The journey made the twenty six year old, known to her shipmates as Jean rather than Jeanne, the first woman to ever sail around the globe Yet so little is known about this extraordinary woman, whose accomplishments were considered to be subversive, even impossible for someone of her sex and class When the ships made landfall and the secret lovers disembarked to explore, Baret carried heavy wooden field presses and bulky optical instruments over beaches and hills, impressing observers on the ships decks with her obvious strength and stamina Less obvious were the strips of linen wound tight around her upper body and the months she had spent perfecting her masculine disguise in the streets and marketplaces of Paris Expedition commander Louis Antoine de Bougainville recorded in his journal that curious Tahitian natives exposed Baret as a woman, eighteen months into the voyage But the true story, it turns out, is complicated In The Discovery of Jeanne Baret, Glynis Ridley unravels the conflicting accounts recorded by Baret s crewmates to piece together the real story how Baret s identity was in fact widely suspected within just a couple of weeks of embarking, and the painful consequences of those suspicions the newly discovered notebook, written in Baret s own hand, that proves her scientific acumen and the thousands of specimens she collected, most famously the showy vine bougainvillea Ridley also richly explores Baret s awkward, sometimes dangerous interactions with the men on the ship, including Baret s lover, the obsessive and sometimes prickly naturalist a fashion plate prince who, with his elaborate wigs and velvet garments, was often mistaken for a woman himself the sour ship s surgeon, who despised Baret and Commerson even a Tahitian islander who joined the expedition and asked Baret to show him how to behave like a Frenchman But the central character of this true story is Jeanne Baret herself, a working class woman whose scientific contributions were quietly dismissed and written out of history until now Anchored in impeccable original research and bursting with unforgettable characters and exotic settings, The Discovery of Jeanne Baret offers this forgotten heroine a chance to bloom at long last.From the Hardcover edition.
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      103 Glynis Ridley
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      Posted by:Glynis Ridley
      Published :2019-09-27T00:32:44+00:00

    1 thought on “The Discovery of Jeanne Baret: A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe

    1. This is fiction, not history Ridley found an intriguing couple of paragraphs about a woman who disguised herself as a man and voyaged around the world, and then, lacking any other primary source material no word of Barets has survived Ridley goes on to invent an entire book s worth of narrative, none of it grounded in primary sources The book is full of carefully painted scenes describing what Ridley imagines might have happened, down to which berry her subject picked on the shores of Tierra del [...]

    2. Shortly after I began this book I was giving it a 2 it was okay Then a 3 then a 4, and by the end I knew it was nothing short of amazing a 5 The story as it was told by Glynis Ridley is a 5 star My problem, initially, was I found myself continually questioning the author how could she possibly know this how could she infer that Certainly I felt the author was biased, and I expected to be engulfed in some sort of feminist manifesto about a young herb woman who went to sea as a slave for an elite [...]

    3. This is certainly an intriguing story Jeanne Baret was a French peasant herb woman who was also the work collaborator and mistress of botanist Philibert Commerson In 1765 she disguised herself as a man and set sail with Commerson on an expedition to circumnavigate the globe The problem with the book is that there is only a tiny amount of real information about these people and their motivations and what really went on onboard the ship Unfortunately that doesn t stop Ridley from speculating beyon [...]

    4. Jeanne Baret was an unusual woman, not just by 18th century standards, but for any time on earth Disguising herself as a man for a 3 year trip around the world in a ship roughly the size of a big townhouse, packed to the gunwales with male sailors, servants and officers was an act of bravery or magical thinking or extreme stupidity We don t know what was in her mind because there are no accounts of her adventure written by her She s been erased from history Until this book Part historical accoun [...]

    5. I loved reading about this woman, who was the first to circumnavigate the globe Her life was simply amazing, and although parts of it are so tragically sad, it seems she had a happy ending The fact that her story is known at all is quite miraculous as there are so few primary sources related to her life I wish there were and that the reader could really get to know this amazing woman The author does a good job of piecing together scant information to form this story Some of her information abou [...]

    6. This book is about a woman who is poor Then she meets a botanist She teaches him all about herbs They become lovers after his wife dies giving birth She later becomes pregnant He has her give the baby up Then she dresses like a man in order to accompany him on a trip around the world She has to bind her chest and do heavy physical labor She eventually is discovered and gang raped They give this baby up as well Overall, very sad I would not recommend this to people.

    7. If anyone asked me a month ago what I thought about Jeanne Baret, I would not have known who they were talking about However after reading The Discovery of Jeanne Baret by Glynis Ridley I can now say that Jeanne Baret was quite a woman Jeanne lived in the 1700 s This time in history was not kind to women Woman were thought of as feeble, unintelligent and impassioned Jeanne Baret was none of these things She grew up and lived in France until she met Philibert Commerson and became not only his lov [...]

    8. Jeanne Baret pretended to be a young man to work as an assistant to botanist Philibert Commerson on a voyage around the world in 1765 Dressed in men s clothes, she spent over two years as the only woman on a French ship The French government was especially interested in plants that were spices or had medicinal value During the sea voyage, Baret did much of the collecting of the specimens since Commerson was suffering from a leg injury.Jeanne Baret was a French peasant herb woman when she met Com [...]

    9. I enter a lot of giveaways for a lot of different books, but this one, which I won from Linda at Silly Little Mischief is one that I think is the best win for me It isn t necessary my favorite our of all the books I won But when you compare the likelihood of me discovering it on my own with how much I enjoyed it, the payoff is high.The book is a biographer of Jeanne Baret, a female botanist who dressed as a man, and without much of the world s knowledge became the first woman to circumvent the w [...]

    10. Maybe it is because I now have many wonderful followers of my blog or maybe it is because so many wonderful fellow bloggers leave wonderful comments on my blog posts well, honestly, I don t know why, but for some reason I now receive many, many offers of free books to be reviewed And now, unlike in the past, many, many of these many, many offers of free books are books that are fabulous And unknown My favorite kinds of reads Small, unknown treasures.This book is one of those small, unknown treas [...]

    11. Saw this one in Science News and thought I might like it But then when I got it Dad snaked it, and took forever to read it, and I just got it back last week It s a non fiction book detailing the life of a French peasant who was, astonishingly, the first woman known to circumnavigate the world Dad loved it, but I bailed about half way through The author just couldn t resist editorialising and speculating I understand that she had extremely limited sources, especially once they left France ship s [...]

    12. When I began this book, I was quickly drawn in by the story of Jeanne Baret who was an herbwoman in France who circumnavigated the globe with Bouganvillea s expedition The writing is well researched and Ridley knows how to make the past approachable, yet I finished this book feeling unsure My uncertainty is due to how Ridley presents the discovery of Baret s sex during the journey as she puts a modern reading of the historical sources This can be important but as most of the book is spent explai [...]

    13. While Jeanne Baret is a fascinating subject and admirable heroine for any woman, the execution of The Discovery of Jeanne Baret A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe suffers as Glynis Ridley interjects too much supposition for a woman who left virtually no paper trail No one could possibly know her thoughts or her feelings, and yet that is precisely how Ms Ridley fills the pages There is a bit too much reading between the lines on firsthand accounts o [...]

    14. Fascinating and dramatic narrative history of the first French sponsored circumnavigation of the globe, of which 1 person was a woman Jeanne Baret disguised as a man I wish I could say hilarious hijinks ensue, but there is nothing hilarious about them The quest for botanical treasures and new land for the French empire have remained to Western history, but Glynis Ridley does a phenomenal job in recreating this woman amongst civilized men and noble savages, though much of it is psychological recr [...]

    15. Bit of a shame to give this book only 3 stars as it isn t that bad I learned a lot It s wonderfully peppered with historical facts and I liked that about it, and it was written just fine My major issue with it was the accuracy It had the feel of a book where the author only had limited research material to go off and therefore imagined, speculated and surmised the rest She took small snippets of information and built whole fabricated stories around them The book was plied with guess work and I d [...]

    16. This is real nonfiction, and so was rather dry compared to the last few creative fiction slash fiction about real people books I ve read.It was a very well researched book about a woman who performed an admirable feat especially back then, but even these days , a woman who has mostly been lost to history but who shouldn t have been I learned a lot, but it definitely didn t have the emotional draw of Under the Wide and Starry Sky or Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy.

    17. Probably because I m into gardening, the thoughts from this book recently popped into my mind Jeanne Baret is a woman botanist and made many scientific contributions to many places on her voyage Super interesting read.

    18. Eh, it was OK There was not nearly enough botanical discussion for me Also, the actual information about Jeanne Baret is rather slim so there much information about the trip around the world than Baret herself The author writes that there are no known journals from Baret and her lover, Commerson, never mentioned her in his writing However, the author presents a lot of information about how Jeanne felt, what she did, and why she did things that are completely speculative but not necessarily stat [...]

    19. This was a fascinating story, but I began to be deeply uneasy about the time the author asserts that Quiros landed near Darwin I finished with no very great degree of confidence in any of the facts recounted in this book It is A Story of Science insofar as it is an illustration of Mark Twain s quote There is something fascinating about science One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact The author makes very serious accusations on very tenuous evidence [...]

    20. A fascinating story about a fascinating scientist, though the author leans on speculation in the absence of written records than I would prefer in a nonfiction biography Still, Baret s story needs to be told.

    21. A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the GlobeBy Glynis RidleyCrown Publishing Group, Random House 291 pgs978 0 307 46353 1Rating 4 Read This Book Jeanne Baret was an 18th century woman, lover, wife, mother, herb woman, botanist, sailor, adventurer, administrator and sometime cross dresser Think about that for a minute Baret was born a French peasant in 1740, a woman who typically would never travel than 20 miles from the parish of her birth A country woman a [...]

    22. The Discovery of Jeanne Baret A Story of Science, the High Seas, and the First Woman to Circumnavigate the Globe by Glynis Ridley introduces Jeanne Baret, a young woman who was an expert in herb lore She posed as a young man in order to assist her lover, the naturalist Philibert Commerson, on French explorer Louis Antoine de Bougainville s round the world expedition from 1766 69 This is a fascinating account of that trip and the oversight history has dealt Baret ignoring her contributions to Com [...]

    23. I was fortunate to win a copy of this book on.This is a hard review to write, and I m very torn as to how to do it as I have mixed feelings about this book The importance of this book can t be denied it is an exploration of the life of Jeanne Baret, who stowed away with her lover Philibert Commerson, masquerading as a man, to circumnavigate the globe and collect plants for their botany exhibits This act alone was massively couragous She survived a hazing at sea, rough conditions, harassment from [...]

    24. Another divided book review, just like the last one of hers On the plus side, this is an interesting story that Ridley keeps moving in a modern, narrative fashion She does a good job with supporting sources because little of Baret is directly known as records about non aristocratic women from this era are scarce As for the primary sources, she manages to nail down the basic facts about Baret s life, her life at sea, and how she was stranded for the latter portion of her trip until she decided to [...]

    25. In 1765, King Louis XV ordered the first French expedition around the world Philibert Commerson was appointed the voyage s botanist and charged with discovering medicines, spices and other resources No women were allowed on ships on this kind of voyage but Commerson s mistress, twenty six year old Jeanne Baret managed to come aboard posing as Commerson s young male assistant She was able to keep the ruse up for quite a while but eventually it all fell apart Even so, she was the first woman to ci [...]

    26. I really wanted to like this book, but I had a big problem with it that I kept running into head on Ridley gathers the story of Baret from the diaries of several people on board the circumnavigational voyage, who each have their own biases, and from general knowledge of the experience of women of the time While Ridley admits up front that the story is cobbled together from these sources, she has an annoying habit of starting to tell a portion of the story from the sources and then meandering off [...]

    27. I won this in the First Reads giveaway I requested the book because I am usually interested in historical women that accomplished things outside of what was expected or valued for women Jeanne Baret was born a French peasant and was taught to be an herb woman Through providing herbs for doctors and such like, she met the famed botanist Philibert Commerson She became his lover and bore him a son He decided in 1765 to travel the world and investigate the flora of different places and she decided t [...]

    28. Note Review copy sent by publicist.Ridley has not only managed to not only write the daily details of life Baret would have faced on her voyage, but also included how and why she interpreted primary documents the way she did This level of transparency ought to be particularly fascinating and useful to historians who wish to follow up, enrich, or repeat Ridley s research.In the case of Baret, there were several persons on the ship who were determined to hide when her identity as a female was reve [...]

    29. This is the story of Jeanne Baret, a young woman who, disguised as a man, joined a French expedition in 1765 and became the first woman to circumnavigate the globe She was the mistress of the expedition s offical naturalist, Philibert Commerson, and, crucially, had a lot of botanical knowledge herself due to her profession as a herb woman She contributed a lot to Commerson s success, a contribution which went competely unacknowledged Her life among some 300 odd men on board must have been incred [...]

    30. This book is well written and researched, to the extend that I almost felt I was watching a documentary with original filmed material There are detailed descriptions of life as a poor worker in rural France, life as a rich man, what women could and could not do, Paris in the 1760s, travelling for months at a time on a ship with 300 others, encountering natives, and much .The information is based on log books, contemporary biographies by people who were present on board, as well as other contempo [...]

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