MSA 14 (Oct. 18-21, 2012)--Proposed Panel on Women Modernists and Reactionary Politics
For at least two decades, scholars have addressed the striking convergence between modernist writers and reactionary, right-wing, or fascist regimes. From Andrew Hewitt's Fascist Modernism and Fredric Jameson's Wyndham Lewis: the Modernist as Fascist to Leon Surette's just-published Dreams of a Totalitarian Utopia: Literary Modernism and Politics, critics have sought to determine why so many modernist innovators were drawn to right-wing or reactionary politics. Yet the discussion has still largely been confined to the political leanings of male modernists, adverting to a fairly standard set of usual suspects: Eliot, Yeats, Pound, Lewis, Marinetti. This panel seeks to bring gender more squarely into this discussion, asking whether (or if) female modernists shared tendencies similar to their right-wing or reactionary male counterparts. Were female modernists equally drawn to reactionary or right-wing political regimes? If so, how did gender inflect the nature of their attraction? We encourage papers that tease out the complexities of this historical moment and the specific possibilities of right-wing or reactionary thought available to early twentieth-century female modernists (authoritarianism, National Socialism, Fascism, Maurrasianism, Royalism, Communism,etc.). Prospective panelists should send a 500-word abstract and a short (2-3 sentence) scholarly biography to Annalisa Zox-Weaver (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Barbara Will (email@example.com) by March 30, 2012.