Crafting Modernity: Gender, Art-Making, and Literature's Materials of Resistance in the Extreme 20th Century Open Access

Elkins, Amy E. (2016)

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Crafting Modernity argues that craft materials and processes--from the specificities of assemblage and needlework media to the processes of developing photos and blending paint pigments--inform rhetorics of nonviolent resistance in recent literary history. Thinking across what Eric Hobsbawm calls the "extreme twentieth century," this dissertation historicizes art-making as it intersects with new technologies, literary experimentation, post-colonial identity, human rights, and feminist critique. In paying sustained attention to the mediums and processes of making that underpin these material and cultural formations, this projectrecasts the critical connection between the aesthetic and political by interrogating new interarts archives of particular significance to women writers and queer activists. In addition to original archival discoveries, including authors' own art works and craft projects, Crafting Modernity draws upon art history, political philosophy, visual theory, and studies of global material culture in chapters that focus on the works of Virginia Woolf, H.D. (Hilda Doolittle), Mina Loy, Lorna Goodison, and Zadie Smith.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Crafting Modernity. 1

Chapter 1: A "whole made of shivering fragments": Woolf, Cameron, and the Photographic Archive. 24

Chapter 2: The "Fibre of her Being": H.D.'s Craft Modernism from Egypt to WWII. 70

Chapter 3: Mina Loy's 'Contours of Collapse': Assemblage and the Class Politics of Trash. 113

Chapter 4: "Draw deep from your palette": Lorna Goodison's Earthly Modernity. 160

Coda: Out of Line: Disorientation, Craft, and (Multi)media in the Multicultural Present. 202

Bibliography. 221

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