I am currently reading this great biography: Marie-Antoinette - The Journey by Antonia Fraser.Obviously, I am getting reved up for Sofia Coppola's upcoming film.
I really feel like it is my obligation to end the proliferation of this urban legend concerning the "Let them eat cake" affair. This phrase is ingrained in our culture to reference all kinds of social injustices and used as a journalistic headline to make people feel smarter (being versed in historical events somehow makes one feel more intelligent). Actually, this little snipe was first said by a Spanish princess who married Louis XIV a hundred years before the arrival of Marie-Antoinette in France. The catchy phrase was used by a series of other princesses throughout the 18th century, but not by Marie-Antoinette who was very philanthropic and good-natured in her quest to win the acceptance of the people of France.
Moral of the story: Everyone loves a villain, and when your head is snapped off by a guillotine you obviously aren't around to defend your integrity.