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Title:Prior Commitments: Multiply Affiliated Women Writers and Modernism's Shifting Boundaries
Author(s):Majerus, Elizabeth Anne
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Janet Lyon
Department / Program:English
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Women's Studies
Abstract:The literary worlds subsumed under the heading "modernism" were made up of a wide array of collectives with different identities, agendas, and spheres of influence. Rather than a strong affiliation with one high-profile group, women and members of other "marginal" groups often had multiple commitments to modernist and nonmodernist circles, both by choice and of necessity. This dissertation considers how modernist impulses combine with an array of other commitments and strategies in the work of three women writers---Mina Loy, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Dorothy Parker---in ways that shed light on modernism's vexed but at times productive relationship with mass culture. Negotiating various avant-garde, traditional, and mass cultural affiliations, Loy, Millay, and Parker created work that troubles the dividing lines often drawn in discussions of modernism between ironic and sentimental, experimental and traditional, and high and low art. Their skill at combining influences from their multiple affiliations enabled these writers to create feminist revisions of both modern irony and traditional sentiment. Despite different and seemingly disparate careers, Loy, Millay, and Parker were all part of a modernity that, far from breaking cleanly with a "feminized" past and an anathematized mass culture, drew on and forged connections with the past and the popular present.
Issue Date:2001
Description:270 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2001.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI3030458
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:2001

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