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Chapter 7 - Mutual Equality

Modernism and Globalization

from Part II - Development

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 April 2022

Joel Evans
Affiliation:
University of Nottingham
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Summary

Beginning with Claude McKay’s “The Harlem Dancer”—in which the national space of Harlem opens up to the Caribbean from which its eponymous dancer has likely emigrated—this chapter reads the mass migration resulting from the structures of imperial capital as the determining social ground of modernist literature. Indeed, modernism registered, to an unprecedented degree, in both formal and thematic terms, an early moment of what we have now come to call globalization. But if modernist form betrays a complicity with globalization, in its persistence representation of the way national literary spaces open themselves up to cultural materials from elsewhere, it also levels a consistent critique of both capitalism and nationalism, a critique that unites its left and right wings. Modernist texts thus tend to separate economic and cultural globalization, critiquing the first, while advocating for the second, even as they demonstrate their deep inter-relationship.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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  • Mutual Equality
  • Edited by Joel Evans, University of Nottingham
  • Book: Globalization and Literary Studies
  • Online publication: 01 April 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108887915.008
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  • Mutual Equality
  • Edited by Joel Evans, University of Nottingham
  • Book: Globalization and Literary Studies
  • Online publication: 01 April 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108887915.008
Available formats
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To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Mutual Equality
  • Edited by Joel Evans, University of Nottingham
  • Book: Globalization and Literary Studies
  • Online publication: 01 April 2022
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108887915.008
Available formats
×