In Search of Lost Women: On Prostitution in the City of Paris and Beyond

project_image.obe_lostwomenIn Search of Lost Women (ISoLW) is a digital humanities project about On Prostitution in the City of Paris (De la prostitution dans la ville de Paris), a monumental and precocious work of social science and a precursor for literary realism. It was published in French in 1836 by Alexandre Parent-Duchâtelet, an aristocratic doctor and social engineer who had previously designed the famous Paris sewers. On Prostitution in the City of Paris was a triumph of both quantitative and qualitative research, one of the first studies to deploy statistical methods on any topic, and the first to draw upon prostitutes’ own experiences through hundreds of interviews. In Search of Lost Women provides the first English-language translations of selections of On Prostitution in the City of Paris, and social context through contemporaneous works of literature, journalism, visual arts, and philosophy.