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A Room of Her Own | Laphams Quarterly

No one seems to have taken much notice of adolescents until the 1860s. That age was a threshold, a departure. In working-class circles, girls and boys were placed early. The bourgeoisie, both French and English, sent its boys to boarding school, middle school, or high school. Girls were educated less and tended to stay at home. Adolescence is above all a gendered category rather than a social one. Hence the distinction of the chambre de demoiselle , or young ladys bedroom, which appeared toward the end of the eighteenth century. This is the testimony of Rtif de La Bretonne, who was keeping watch: I saw arrive a young girl who appeared to be very beautifulShe was put to bed in her room, while I was put in a little room under a staircase.