Jan 9 – Course Introduction  

Readings: Harry Levin, story “What Was Modernism?”; Friedman, “Definitional Excursions” and “Periodizing Modernism”; Walkowitz and Mao, “The New Modernist Studies”

Jan 16 – Conrad

Heart of Darkness, Nietzsche – from “On Truth and Lies in a Non-Moral Sense”:  and Achebe – “An Image of Africa”

Debate Proposition: Heart of Darkness is a racist novel that should not be taught to undergraduates.

 Jan 23 – Lewis

Tarr and BLAST! manifesto:

and Schmitt – from Political Theology (handout)

Debate Proposition: Lewis’s aesthetics are politically dangerous and irresponsible.

Jan 30 – West

Return of the Soldier and Freud – from The Ego and the Id (handout)

and Rivers – from “The Repression of War Experience” (handout)

Debate Proposition: West’s, Freud’s, and Rivers’s representations of repression are sexist.

Feb 6 – Class cancelled

Feb 13 – Reading Break

Feb 20 – Barnes

Nightwood and Havelock Ellis – from Studies in the Psychology of Sex: and David Harvey – from Paris: Capital of Modernity (handout)

Debate Proposition: Despite the revelatory nature of Nightwood, Barnes only repeats the characterization of homosexuality as a pathology.

Feb 27 – Woolf

The Waves and Patrick McGee – “The Politics of Modernist Form, or Who Rules The Waves?” (handout) and Orwell – “Politics and the English Language”

Debate Proposition: Woolf’s use of form in The Waves has no political dimension.

Mar 6 – Lowry

Under the Volcano and David Trotter – from Paranoid Modernism (handout)

Debate Proposition: Under the Volcano is a paranoid fantasy in which all the action happens in Firmin’s mind in the instant of his death.

Term Paper Proposal Due

Mar 13 – Lowry II // Bowen I

The Heat of the Day

Debate Proposition: Bowen’s concentration on the everyday marks her modernism as feminine, contra Lowry’s masculine modernism.

Mar 20 – Bowen II

The Heat of the Day and Faragher – “The Form of Modernist Propaganda in Elizabeth Bowen’s The Heat of the Day” (handout)

Debate Proposition: The form of Bowen’s novel critiques the imperial relationship between Ireland and England.

Draft Term Paper Due

Mar 27 – Beckett I

Molloy and Hegel – from Phenomenology of Spirit (handout)

Debate Proposition: Moran and Molloy are the same person.

Apr 3 – Beckett II and Overview

Critique Due

* All Assignments are Due at 11:00 a.m. *

** Term Paper Due 11 April at 11:00 a.m. **

Leave a Reply