Proposal

Read the full proposal here [PDF], and feel free to offer feedback in the comments!

The goal for the proposed volume Teaching Modernist Women’s Writing in English is to provide a resource for faculty and scholars at all levels and in many relevant fields for the teaching of women’s writing in modernist studies (primarily in English), including looking at current professional and pedagogical trends and new developments in the field. The audience for this title would include, among others, teachers of undergraduate and graduate students; and of British and American/transatlantic/global/world literature, literary criticism/the history of literary criticism/feminist literary criticism, women’s/gender studies, queer studies, and modernist/20th-century studies.

I would suggest, as an initial starting point for discussing such a project as this, framing the volume around the variety of approaches available to teacher-scholars in the field of modernist women’s writing in English; and the many themes and tensions inherent in the study of these works. Thanks to the recovery endeavors of those scholars working in feminism and women’s studies, we have ample evidence that women shaped modernist culture as novelists and poets, journalists, reviewers, editors, and publishers. There is a multiplicity of approaches emerging from the ways women writers of the period simultaneously participated in, even shaped, the “modernist” agenda, while also at times resisting its revolutionary aesthetic and political moves. Some writers under consideration here have been rediscovered and claimed for modernism and this has shaped our understanding of their work; others might be viewed in a new light through placing them in this aesthetic and cultural context. Thus this volume proposes both to further the ongoing project of broadening the framework of modernist studies and to offer instructors and scholars a means of engaging with that project through research and teaching.

The volume would provide multiple interpretive frameworks and tools for faculty interested in designing courses in Anglophone women’s writing in modernist studies as well as including such writing in courses addressing broader themes, and for those interested in learning about current trends and innovations in the field and its pedagogy as part of their professional development. The organization of the book would be formal, thematic, and methodological. The volume would provide direction regarding suitable texts and authors (as well as possibly introducing faculty to new figures); it would suggest models for both undergraduate and graduate teaching; it would offer a range of approaches; and it would assist faculty with engaging with primary and secondary material, including electronic resources and current work being done in digital humanities as it pertains to the study of modernist women writers.

Highlights would include comparative and interdisciplinary approaches, including the digital humanities; emphases on sexuality, class, race, globalism/imperialism/postcolonialism; responses to the world wars; and women writers’ engagements with popular culture, periodical culture, and the “middlebrow.” All of these highlights are informed by a shifting scholarly landscape as well as evolving pedagogical practice, and they reflect the widening of modernist studies to include previously neglected figures and questions and to encompass multiple “modernisms.”

Suggested/Proposed Sections:

Part I: Teaching Modernist Contexts/Modernism in the Context of Teaching

Part II: Authors and Concerns (or Themes, or Topics)

Part III: Genre and Form

Part IV: Approaches and Strategies