Deviant Modernism: Sexual and Textual Errancy in T.S Eliot, James Joyce, and Marcel Proust

Deviant Modernism: Sexual and Textual Errancy in T.S Eliot, James Joyce, and Marcel Proust

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Colleen Lamos
Cambridge University Press, 12/10/1998
EAN 9780521624183, ISBN10: 0521624185

Hardcover, 280 pages, 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.9 cm
Language: English

This original study re-evaluates central texts of the modernist canon - Eliot's early poetry including The Waste Land, Joyce's Ulysses and Proust's Remembrance of Things Past - by examining sexual energies and identifications in them that are typically regarded as perverse. According to modern cultural discourses and psychosexual categorizations, these deviant desires and identifications feminize men, or tend to render them homosexual. Colleen Lamos's analysis of the operations of gender and sexuality in these texts reveals conflicts, concerning the definition of masculine heterosexuality, which cut across the aesthetics of modernism. She argues that canonical male modernism, far from being a monolithic entity with a coherently conservative political agenda, is in fact the site of errant impulses and unresolved struggles. What emerges is a reconsideration of modernist literature as a whole, and a recognition of the heterogeneous forces which formed and deformed modernism.

1. Straightening out literary criticism
T. S. Eliot and error
2. The end of poetry for ladies
T. S. Eliot's early poetry
3. Text of error, text in error
James Joyce's Ulysses
4. Sexual/textual inversion
Marcel Proust

"This is a controversial study recommended for upper-division undergraduates through faculty." Choice

"Yet Deviant Modernism is valuable as a study of that very will to normativity which structures the conventional moral and artistic codes of these three high male modernists, deconstructing the authority os such codes by revealing their defensiveness, circular logic, and disavowed irrationality." James Joyce Literary Supplement

"Deviant Modernism is extremely well researched and beautifully written." Modern Philology

"...[Lamo's study of modernism] makes such intellectual labor all the more pressing and valuable." Novel