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Module Information

 Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module you should have:

Investigated conceptions of gender in a selection of modernist writings; discussed and critiqued the theoretical concerns of modernist authors; gained familiarity with a variety of critical reappraisals of modernism, especially those which address the issue of sexual difference and gender; developed skills as a textual critic. The main aim of this module is to generate readings and interpretations of the primary texts in accordance with the intellectual interests of the group members and in the light of feminist and gender studies.

Texts to Buy

Barnes, Djuna. Nightwood

Cather, Willa. The Professor’s House

H.D. Her (also known as HERmione)

H.D. End to Torment: A Memoir of Ezra Pound

Pound, Ezra. Gaudier-Brzeska: A Memoir

Pound, Ezra. Selected Poems, 1908-1959.

Gertrude Stein. Three Lives

Rhys, Jean. Voyage in the Dark

Scott, Bonnie Kime ed. The Gender of Modernism: A Critical Anthology. Indiana University Press, 1990

Teaching Methods

Ten 2 hour seminars.

Individual tutorials based on essay work.

Assessed, researched essay (7-8,000 words)

Module Requirements

Attend seminars, having prepared the material indicated by the module information, together with any further instructions from the seminar tutor.

Be prepared to take part in seminar discussion each week. No formal presentations are required, but each student is required to present their responses to the text and to the secondary reading at the start of every seminar.

Submit first draft of essay in accordance with published instructions.

Meet with the tutor to discuss an essay plan and first draft of the researched essay. Attend further tutorials if requested.

Useful Background Reading

Benstock, Shari. Women of the Left Bank. London: Virago, 1987

Boone, Joseph Allen. Libidinal Currents: Sexuality and the Shaping of Modernism. Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1998

Bradbury, Malcolm & James McFarlane eds. Modernism: A Guide to European Literature 1890-1930. London: Penguin Books, 1991

Childs, Peter. Modernism. London: Routledge, 2000

Dickie, Margaret. On the Modernist Long Poem. University of Iowa Press, 1986

Dickie, Margaret & Thomas Travisano eds. Gendered Modernisms: American Women Poets and Their Readers. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1996

Gilbert, Sandra & Susan Gubar. No Man's Land. 3 vols. New Haven & London: Yale University Press, 1987 /89 /95

Hanscombe, Gillian & Virginia L. Smyers. Writing for Their Lives. London: The Women's Press, 1987

Levenson, Michael ed. The Cambridge Companion to Modernism. Cambridge University Press, 1999

Nadel, Ira B. ed. The Cambridge Companion to Ezra Pound. Cambridge University Press, 1999

Nicholls, Peter. Modernisms. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1995

Rado, Lisa ed. Rereading Modernism: New Directions in Feminist Criticism. New York & London: Garland, 1994

Scott, Bonnie Kime. Refiguring Modernism 2 vols. Indiana University Press, 1995

Waugh, Patricia. Practising Postmodernism/Reading Modernism. London: Edward Arnold, 1992.

Module Outline

Week One: Gertrude Stein section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 479-530.

Further Reading

Carolyn Burke, “Getting Spliced: Modernism and Sexual Difference,” American Quarterly, 39 (1987) 98-121. (Photocopy provided).

Bonnie Kime Scott, Introduction, The Gender of Modernism (1990).

Week Two: Gertrude Stein, Three Lives (1909)

Further Reading

“Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas: Rue de Fleurus,” from Benstock (1987)

Catharine R. Stimpson, “Gertrude Stein and the Transposition of Gender,” in The Poetics of Gender, ed. by Nancy K. Miller (New York: Columbia University Press, 1986), pp. (1)-18.

Week Three: Ezra Pound section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 353-371.

Further Reading

Wayne Koestenbaum, “The Waste Land: T.S. Eliot's and Ezra Pound's Collaboration on Hysteria,” Twentieth Century Literature: 34, 2, (Summer 1988), 113-139.

Week Four: Ezra Pound, cantos 29 & 81

Further Reading

Lois Bar-Yaacov, “The Odd Couple: The Correspondence between Marianne Moore and Ezra Pound, 1918-392,” Twentieth Century Literature, 34, 4, (Winter, 1988), 507-527.

Eli Goldblatt, “Gender Matters in Pound's Cantos,” Journal of Modern Literature, 15, 1, (Summer, 1989), 35-53.

Helen M. Dennis, "Pound, women and gender," The Cambridge Companion to Ezra Pound. 264-283.

Helen M Dennis, "The Eleusinian Mysteries as an Organizing Principle in The Pisan Cantos." Paideuma X, 2 (Fall 1981). 273-82

Week Five: H.D. End to Torment and section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 85-138.

Further Reading

Cyrena N. Pondrom, “H.D. and the Origins of Imagism,” Sagetrieb, 4, 1, (Spring 1985), 73-97.

Week Six: H.D., Her (1981)

Further Reading

Helen Sword, “Orpheus and Eurydice in the Twentieth Century: Lawrence, H.D. and the Poetics of the Turn,” Twentieth Century Literature, 35, 4, (Winter 1989), 407-428.

Week Seven: Jean Rhys, Voyage in the Dark (1934). Together with Rhys section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 372-392.

Further Reading

Carole Angier, Jean Rhys, (London, Penguin , 1992) pp. 297-333.

Week Eight: Djuna Barnes, Nightwood (1936). Together with Barnes section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 19-45, and T.S. Eliot’s Introduction. The Gender of Modernism pp. 139-149.

Further Reading

Dianne Chisholm, “Obscene Modernism: Eros Noir and the Profane Illumination of Djuna,” American Literature: A Journal of Literary History, (Durham, NC) 69, no. 1 (Mar 1997), 167-206.

Week Nine: Willa Cather, The Professor’s House (1926). Together with Cather section from The Gender of Modernism pp. 46-62.

Further Reading

Maria Lindemann, “In a Prohibition Country,” Willa Cather: Queering America (New York: Columbia University Press, 1999) pp. 83-114.

Week Ten: Ezra Pound, Gaudier-Brzeska: A Memoir.

Followed by presentations by everyone on their essay topic.