Summer Repeat: The Feast of All Saints (2001)

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The Frock Flicks team is taking a little time off for a summer break, so we’re repeating some favorite posts from the archives.

 

Based on a historical-fiction Anne Rice novel, this Showtime miniseries had a reasonably big budget, so the 1820s to 1840s New Orleans setting looks sumptuous. It’s a fascinating story about the system of plaçage forced on otherwise free Black women by rich white men.

 

The Feast of All Saints (2001)

The Feast of All Saints (2001)

 

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Three historical costumers who decided the world needed a podcast and blog dedicated to historical costume movies and everything right and wrong with them.

3 Responses

  1. Roxana.

    Forced on?
    The sad fact is women of all colors had few alternatives to catching a man to support them. Placage was just another strategy to do so. If your goal was financial security marriage had more legal protections but being a rich man’s mistress was a default strategy for women who couldn’t hope for marriage. Placees had contracts securing their right to support and property. Some women and their children did very well indeed meaning placage had some appeal.
    All that said it was a Very Bad system reinforcing caste and racial divisions. It has unfortunately been glamorized by some writers but there is nothing glamorous about women being forced to sell themselves to survive however advantageous the bargain.

    Reply
    • Trystan L. Bass

      Plaçage was run by & for white men. Feast of All Saints is specifically about a Black girl being forced into that racist, misogynist system.

      Sure, you could say being forced into plaçage was more ‘appealing’ than chattel slavery, but neither are as appealing as being free to live your own life.

      Reply
      • Roxana.

        I am in total agreement. Living off men is Not Good regardless of color.

        Reply

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