Raphael Ingelbien Modernism has been one of the most contested categories of English literary history. Over the last two decades, reputations have been challenged, ideologies have been questioned, and the very concept of an "English modernism" has given way to views that stress the importance of national contexts in the relation that modernist texts bear to history. It has become increasingly difficult to speak of "English modernism" as though it were a "British" or "Anglo-Saxon" category that includes names which were usually lumped together: Eliot, Joyce, Pound, Woolf, Yeats, etc.1 Irish literature scholars in particular have been keen to reclaim Yeats and Joyce as part of a distinctively Irish version of modernism, sometimes analyzing their works through postcolonial theory.2 The postcolonial challenge and the devolutionary process that affect the canon of English-speaking modernism strike at the very root of what was originally meant by the term: indeed, cosmopolitanism and internationalism were long supposed to be hallmarks of modernism. Those qualities have not been completely discarded, but their nature and scope have been re-examined in the light of modernist writers' involvement in the cultural politics of specific nations. One aspect of modernist internationalism, however, clearly continues to operate unchanged
Comparative Literature Studies – Penn State University Press
Published: Mar 27, 2005
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