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Modern Literature Commons

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Articles 1 - 6 of 6

Full-Text Articles in Modern Literature

Memory In Memoir & Biography: Science, Place, And Agency, Johnathan E. Longo Feb 2018

Memory In Memoir & Biography: Science, Place, And Agency, Johnathan E. Longo

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

This thesis explores modern scientific understanding of memory in humans and how it affects works of life writing. Scientific research shows that memory is unreliable and often misunderstood by the general public, and this has implications for different forms of life writing. This paper uses biographies, memoirs, and hybrid forms of life writing to explore how memory, with all its limitations, is used in service of a life story. How do writers of these sub-genres use memory and why are those strategies different from one another? Questions of agency and authority over written and spoken material make the issues still ...


Waking Dreams: Modernist Intoxications And The Poetics Of Altered States, Jason Ciaccio Sep 2016

Waking Dreams: Modernist Intoxications And The Poetics Of Altered States, Jason Ciaccio

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

Intoxication as a poetic principle is often identified with the romantic imagination. The literature of the intoxicated reverie is commonly thought of as synonymous with works such as Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan,” DeQuincey’s accounts of numerous nightmares and reveries, a number of Keats’ odes, Novalis’ hymns, E.T.A. Hoffmann’s stories, and Poe’s oneiric Gothic tales. Each of these, in part through their opiation or the incorporation of various other draughts, evokes a realm of dreams and visions of various sorts that are commonly associated with romantic poetic practices. The ecstatic trance, the sense of passing into ...


Between Life And Literature: The Influence Of Don Quixote And Madame Bovary On Twentieth-Century Women's Fiction, Victoria Tomasulo Sep 2016

Between Life And Literature: The Influence Of Don Quixote And Madame Bovary On Twentieth-Century Women's Fiction, Victoria Tomasulo

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

This project demonstrates the influence of two foundational novels in the Western canon, Don Quixote and Madame Bovary, on twentieth-century British, Italian, and Anglo-American women’s fiction. Both novels illustrate the dangers and pleasures of literary influence. Stylistically innovative, they anticipated concerns that were of import to feminist literary critics in the seventies and beyond: the transformative power of the reading encounter, its normative and subversive effects on gendered identities, and the need of individual writers to liberate themselves from the shackles of literary convention. Drawing upon textual and paratextual evidence such as interviews, journal entries, and essays, I argue ...


The New Reflexivity: Puzzle Films, Found Footage, And Cinematic Narration In The Digital Age, Jordan Lavender-Smith Feb 2016

The New Reflexivity: Puzzle Films, Found Footage, And Cinematic Narration In The Digital Age, Jordan Lavender-Smith

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

“The New Reflexivity” tracks two narrative styles of contemporary Hollywood production that have yet to be studied in tandem: the puzzle film and the found footage horror film. In early August 1999, near the end of what D.N. Rodowick refers to as “the summer of digital paranoia,” two films entered the wide-release U.S. theatrical marketplace and enjoyed surprisingly massive financial success, just as news of the “death of film” circulated widely. Though each might typically be classified as belonging to the horror genre, both the unreliable “puzzle film” The Sixth Sense and the fake-documentary “found footage film” The ...


Transparent Interiors: Detective And Mystery Fiction In The Age Of Photography, Melissa D. Dunn Feb 2016

Transparent Interiors: Detective And Mystery Fiction In The Age Of Photography, Melissa D. Dunn

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

This dissertation is a meditation on the mutable boundaries that define interior life in the age of photography. I probe these boundaries through selected readings in two literary genres that share conceptual links with photography—detective fiction and mystery fiction. Photography plays an important role in a radical reconsideration of the boundaries between public and private, engaging two dominant and often conflicting cultural values that shape American life at the turn of the twentieth century—the mandate to define and protect privacy and the simultaneous call for greater transparency in public and personal life. Photography, through its perceived transgressions against ...


A Passage From Brooklyn To Ithaca: The Sea, The City And The Body In The Poetics Of Walt Whitman And C. P. Cavafy, Michael P. Skafidas Feb 2016

A Passage From Brooklyn To Ithaca: The Sea, The City And The Body In The Poetics Of Walt Whitman And C. P. Cavafy, Michael P. Skafidas

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

This treatise is the first extensive comparative study of Walt Whitman and C. P. Cavafy. Despite the abundant scholarship dealing with the work and life of each, until now no critic has put the two poets together. Whitman’s poetry celebrates birth, youth, the self and the world as seen for the first time, while Cavafy’s diverts from the active present to resurrect a world whose key, in Eliot’s terms, is memory. Yet, I see the two poets conversing in the crossroads of the fin de siècle; the American Whitman and the Greek Cavafy embody the antithesis of ...