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Modernisms Across Borders

ENGL 573.401
Wednesdays 2-5:00 pm

Seminars on modernism are usually taught within a single geographic area, cultural tradition, period, language, medium, and disciplinary framework. Yet modernism was a border-crossing phenomenon, and it may productively be studied as such. A recent turn toward global and transnational paradigms is one of the few traits shared by modernist studies across multiple disciplines. “Modernism Across Borders” will take advantage of this commonality among diverse sites of inquiry, treating modernism as a transborder phenomenon while also probing the limitations and still-latent potential of such an approach. One of a series of experimental seminars sponsored by the Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory each spring semester, "Modernisms Across Borders" will be organized as a laboratory space for graduate students and faculty working in adjacent fields and problems. The first two hours of each three-hour class will be devoted to discussion of a number of readings in the study of modernism. The third hour of each session will be devoted to a presentation and discussion of a work in progress—a project either of a member of the course, or of a guest from among Penn graduate students and faculty members. Seminar discussions will be led by a number of Penn faculty. Conveners of the overall course are Christine Poggi and Kevin M. F. Platt. Students are encouraged to bring work in progress, either on the basis of past seminars or independent projects, to form the basis for their projects in this seminar.