By Daniel Katz
This learn takes as its aspect of departure a vital premise: that the frequent phenomenon of expatriation in American modernism is much less a flight from the place of birth than a dialectical go back to it, yet one that renders uncanny all tropes of familiarity and immediacy which 'fatherlands' and 'mother tongues' are routinely noticeable as delivering. during this framework, equally totalizing notions of cultural authenticity are visible to manipulate either exoticist mystification and 'nativist' obsessions with the purity of the 'mother tongue.' even as, cosmopolitanism, translation, and multilingualism develop into frequently eroticized tropes of violation of this version, and as a result, at the same time courted and abhorred, in a circulate which, if crystallized in expatriate modernism, persevered to make its presence felt beyond.Beginning with the past due paintings of Henry James, this ebook is going directly to study at size Ezra Pound and Gertrude Stein, to finish with the uncanny regionalism of mid-century San Francisco Renaissance poet Jack Spicer, and the deterritorialized aesthetic of Spicer's peer, John Ashbery. via an emphasis on modernism as an area of generalized interference, the perform and trope of translation emerges as imperative to the entire writers involved, whereas the ebook is still in consistent discussion with key fresh works on transnationalism, transatlanticism, and modernism.
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Extra info for American Modernism's Expatriate Scene: The Labour of Translation (Edinburgh Studies in Transatlantic Literatures)
In his investigation of the phenomenon, Freud will fix on Schelling’s definition of “unheimlich” as “the name for everything that ought to have remained . . secret and hidden but has come to light” (345, original emphasis). In English, we could think of Freud’s problematic as a dialectics of the “private,” in that this word, like “heimlich,” implies both what is most personal and also what is potentially shameful, and to be hidden. In this light, “unheimlich” could also be read as a radical “deprivatization,” in the sense of shameful exposure but also of the removal of a space of absolute, sacrosanct identification, creating a situation in which one’s affect, though recognizable, is strange to oneself.
12 In his work on “orginary seduction,” Laplanche seeks to restore to “seduction” the importance it had for the early Freud and for Ferenczi, but with crucial modifications. For Laplanche, the scene of seduction is not one occurring between a child and its parents, but more generally consists of the invitation proffered to the child by the entire adult world to enter into a signifying structure charged with unconscious meaning. In other words, not only must the child translate the meaning of the words and gests with which she is constantly confronted, but these “messages” of love and care delivered by the adult world are themselves laden with unconscious sexual energy of which their bearers are unaware.
When Ralph deems her too “familiar” to Isabel the latter defends her precisely for being “vulgar,” with a quibble on the Latin root: “she’s a kind of emanation of the great democracy . . ” (87) Isabel opines, to which Ralph replies: “You like her then for patriotic reasons. I’m afraid it is on those very grounds I object to her” (87)—an objection which leaves unclear whether it is Henrietta’s American identity which is at fault or simply her attachment to the patriotic ideal in the abstract. In any event, what follows is the strangest scene in the entire novel.