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Title: Modernist literature and the concept of space
Author: Garrington, Abbie
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2006
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This thesis attempts to reassess the relevance of the concept of space in the modernist period. To complete this reassessment I take an interdisciplinary approach in which I offer a series of snapshots of different cultural symptoms of shifts in the space concept at this time. I have selected these snapshots because they either stem from, relate to or interrogate the capitalist economic system in a relatively explicit way. My central argument is that while we tend to think of postmodern or late phase capitalism as primarily operating through an ordering of space, we intuitively think of the rapidly developing economic system of the modernist period as being structured around time. I argue that it is possible to offer an alternative history that sees capitalism as always a spatial endeavour, and to suggest that the spatial nature of the modernist period ahs been partially hidden from view by the temporalising tendencies of philosophy, Marxist social theory and the social sciences throughout the twentieth century. I suggest that the cultural output of the modernist avant-garde operates as a kind of barometer of the true spatial nature of the modernist period, offering an illumination of the way in which the capitalist system was reconfiguring social life at this time. I focus on the paintings and pasted paper works of Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, on the newspapers and advertisements of the modernist period, and on novels by James Joyce and Virginia Woolf in particular, in addition to those by Dorothy Richardson, Joseph Conrad, George Orwell and Alfred Döblin.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available