English 150

Senior Seminar: Gender, Modernism, and Print Culture

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
13 Spring 2006 Hollis, Catherine
Hollis, Catherine
TTh 3:30-5 305 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

Finkelstein and McCleery: An Introduction to Book History; Barnes, D.: Nightwood; Butts, M.: The Taverner Novels; Cooley, M.: The Archivist; Eliot, T.S.: The Waste Land: A Facsimile and Transcript of the Original Drafts; Joyce, J.: ?Nausicaa? from Ulysses; Moore, M.: Poems; Rhys, J.: Voyage in the Dark; Woolf, V.: ?Women and Fiction?; A Room of One?s Own; a Course Reader with additional materials, including Darnton: ?What Is the History of Books??; D.F. McKenzie: ?The Book as an Expressive Form?; and supporting materials for the primary texts (excised passages from Nightwood; ?Nausicaa? as it appeared in The Little Review; Moore?s ?The Fish? as it appears in The Dial; mss. versions of A Room of One?s Own; and more


Robert McAlmon famously observed that ?it is some kind of commentary on the modern period that Joyce?s work and acclaim should have been fostered by high-minded ladies, rather than by men,? without going into detail about why gender matters in the publication of modernist texts. This course aims to produce that missing commentary by supplementing a discussion of gender and sexuality in modernist texts with an analysis of how these issues emerge in the circumstances of their production. Modernist print culture comprises the little magazines, small presses, and social networks that emerged to publish and promote Anglo-American modernist writing. These networks were especially the province of women and amateurs, non-professionals willing to risk censorship, poor financial returns, and canonical anonymity in service to their authors? books. We will analyze famous case histories of modernist publication ? Eliot?s Waste Land, Joyce?s Ulysses, Woolf?s self-publication ? in addition to those less familiar ? Barnes?s Nightwood, Rhys?s Voyage in the Dark, and Mary Butts? Taverner Novels: whenever possible, we will consider these texts? original publication formats through photocopies and archival samples. Throughout this course, we will examine the tensions between the formal complexity of modernist texts and the methods of their production, while asking whether (and how) publication circumstances influence how a text is read and interpreted. This seminar should give you an understanding of the instability of the material text by grounding you in the emerging scholarly fields of the history of the book and textual studies, which we will group together under the term ?print culture.?

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