Download e-book for kindle: The Zukofsky Era: Modernity, Margins, and the Avant-Garde by Ruth Jennison

Download e-book for kindle: The Zukofsky Era: Modernity, Margins, and the Avant-Garde by Ruth Jennison

By Ruth Jennison

Inaugurated in 1931 via Louis Zukofsky, Objectivist poetry gave expression to the advanced contours of tradition and politics in the USA throughout the nice melancholy. This examine of Zukofsky and others within the Objectivist constellation, George Oppen and Lorine Niedecker, elaborates the dialectic among the formal experimental beneficial properties in their poetry and their innovative commitments to the novel potentials of modernity.

Mixing textual research, archival learn, and historiography, Ruth Jennison exhibits how Zukofsky, Oppen, and Niedecker braided their reports as working-class Jews, political activists, and feminists into radical, canon-challenging poetic kinds. utilizing the instruments of severe geography, Jennison deals an account of the connection among the asymmetric spatial landscapes of capitalism in drawback and the Objectivists’ paratactical textscapes. In a rethinking of the final phrases within which poetic modernism is defined, she identifies and assesses the main features of the Objectivist avant-garde, together with its formal reputation of proliferating commodity cultures, its team spirit with worldwide anticapitalist pursuits, and its principal to advance poetics that nurtured innovative literacy. The ensuing narrative is a traditionally delicate, thorough, and cutting edge account of Objectivism’s Depression-era modernism.

A wealthy research of yankee avant-garde poetic types and politics, The Zukofsky period convincingly situates Objectivist poetry as a politically radical stream comprising a very important bankruptcy in American literary historical past. students and scholars of modernism specially will locate a lot to debate in Jennison’s theoretical examine.

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Additional resources for The Zukofsky Era: Modernity, Margins, and the Avant-Garde (Hopkins Studies in Modernism)

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Patrick Brantlinger has demonstrated, in Bread and Circuses: Theories of Mass Culture as Social Decay, that the kind of social analysis that views mass culture pejoratively, as another opiate of the populace allowing the ruling class to maintain its dominance, has its roots in classical antiquity, and exists in both conservative and radical forms. But the term “mass culture” specifically gained currency in the 1930s “as a primarily political and apocalyptic term, used to refer to a symptom of social morbidity, the cancer or one of the cancers in a failing body politic” (Brantlinger, 31).

The concluding section on Corelli introduces perhaps the best-known popular novelist of her time, and argues that her aesthetic and writing furnish a continuous commentary on literary modernism, not entirely from the outside. ” She shared enough with Stephen Dedalus that his friends jokingly accuse him of writing one of her books, and enough with Joyce to provide him—and his modernist contemporaries—with a distorting mirror. Chapter four further establishes one of the main themes of this study, which is that Ulysses works to disestablish the traditional writer/reader dichotomy established through the professionalization of fiction writing during the nineteenth century.

In order to avoid saddling Joyce’s work with the “bankruptcy of the ideology of the mythic,” he suggests that we displace the act or the operation of interpretation itself. The Odyssey parallel can then be seen as one of the organizational frameworks of the narrative text: but it is not itself the interpretation of that narrative, as the ideologues of myth have thought. Rather it is itself—qua organizational framework—what remains to be interpreted. (Jameson 1982, 128) He then proposes that we see the Odyssean scaffolding as just that—an ordering mechanism of strictly pragmatic value to the author, one that rather arbitrarily substitutes for the traditional ordering devices of plot, character, and so forth, which have lost their force in the twentieth century.

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