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Modernism, Space and the CityOutsiders and Affect in Paris, Vienna, Berlin, and London$
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Andrew Thacker

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780748633470

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748633470.001.0001

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(p.24) 1 Paris
Modernism, Space and the City

Andrew Thacker

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter explores the affective pull that Paris exerted upon modernist writers and artists, attracting outsiders from around the globe to experience its cultural institutions and openness to creative experimentation. The chapter first discusses the writers T. S. Eliot, Guillaume Apollinaire, and Blaise Cendrars as ‘outsider-insiders’ (in Peter Gay’s terms), figures who come to the city as outsiders but who, by virtue of status or identity, are able to function as insiders within its cultural geography. The second group of writers discusses include Hope Mirrlees (in her poem Paris), Jean Rhys (in novels such as After Leaving Mr Mackenzie and Good Morning, Midnight), and Gwendolyn Bennett (in her story ‘Wedding Day’), female modernists who remain marked as outsiders in the city. The chapter discusses how all of these writers engaged affectively with various aspects of the technological modernity of Paris, including features such as the Eiffel Tower, café culture, hotel rooms, and the Grands Boulevards.

Keywords:   Guillaume Apollinaire, Gwendolyn Bennett, Blaise Cendrars, T. S. Eliot, Hope Mirrlees, Jean Rhys, Paris Metro, Eiffel Tower, Harlem Renaissance, Haussmann

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