By Daniel Katz
This examine takes as its aspect of departure a necessary premise: that the common 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 frequently visible as delivering. during this framework, equally totalizing notions of cultural authenticity are obvious to manipulate either exoticist mystification and 'nativist' obsessions with the purity of the 'mother tongue.' while, cosmopolitanism, translation, and multilingualism turn into frequently eroticized tropes of violation of this version, and consequently, concurrently courted and abhorred, in a stream which, if crystallized in expatriate modernism, persisted to make its presence felt beyond.Beginning with the past due paintings of Henry James, this booklet is going directly to learn 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 significant to all the writers involved, whereas the e-book continues to be in consistent discussion with key fresh works on transnationalism, transatlanticism, and modernism.
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Additional resources for American Modernism's Expatriate Scene: The Labour of Translation (Edinburgh Studies in Transatlantic Literatures)
2 “It was indeed as if they were arranged, gathered for a performance, the performance of ‘Europe’” (279), he muses, on the arrival of fresh tourists he must entertain. Yet despite this caveat, no audience could be more enthusiastic than Strether for the various “performances” given him by Marie, Chad, or even the artist Gloriani, and the course of the novel mercilessly demonstrates to Strether just what these performances have been covering over. ” In this way it is an obvious parallel to Strether’s remarkable foray into the countryside in search of an actual landscape that might resemble the Lambinet painting he remembers from years before, showing that for Strether a pre-constructed representation of France is its ultimate reality, the standard against which the authenticity of the country itself will be measured.
However it is a seduction, as the passage above indicates, effected by the maternal agency. Prior to this scene, Hilda has hovered close to Catholic idolatry precisely in her reverence of a Roman shrine to the Virgin, and here, the call of the mother is too strong to resist. But what must be noted is that for the call of the mother to finally M856 KATZ TEXT M/UP 14/6/07 10:10 am Page 43 The Mother’s Tongue [ 43 exert so strong a pressure, it must also be in the mother tongue. For Hawthorne, it is the mother tongue which allows the Mother to speak, while the Mother herself speaks nothing but the pure concentration of the proximate and the proper, so sorely wanting to the wandering expatriate.
This is also of course what is at issue in Ralph and Henrietta’s quarrel over the former’s refusal to marry. But this quest for the uncommon, the evasion of commonality, is also portrayed as impossible––as Ralph reminds us, after M856 KATZ TEXT M/UP 14/6/07 10:10 am Page 29 Native Well Being [ 29 Henrietta asks him if he considers it right to give up his country, “Ah, one doesn’t give up one’s country any more than one gives up one’s grandmother. They’re both antecedent to choice––elements of one’s composition that are not to be eliminated” (85).