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How to Be Good: The Politics of Behaviour in Early Modern Europe

The genres of courtesy, etiquette and spiritual guidance constituted some of the most popular categories of literature in the early modern period. How to behave one-self was a serious subject; whether to get ahead in this life or to seek salvation in the next were central concerns of the elites and the masses alike.

This exhibition presents a selection of courtesy and spiritual handbooks held in the Old Library of the Centre Culturel Irlandais in order to explore the themes of civility, spirituality, ‘le bonheur’, and the relative discourses on the interior and exterior life.

Curator of the exhibition: Linda Kiernan, who held an Old Library research bursary in 2011.

Image : Torquato Tasso artiste inconnu