In 1954, Maya Angelou performed in a production of George Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess that toured through Italy. This United States-sponsored initiative brought African American performance to European stages in an effort to combat Soviet propaganda about American racism. As Melanie Masterton Sherazi shows in her contribution to this cluster, Angelou’s own memoirs of the trip recall not...
Oct 15, 2019
This essay cluster begins with an ending. Specifically, it began with the ending of Patrick Collier’s “What Is Modern Periodical Studies?,” which concludes with a provocation to find a new way to read and study modern periodicals. In order to develop coherent methodological approaches to modern periodicals, Collier argues, we need to resist the urge to “decid[e] in advance where [a] periodical...
Jul 3, 2019
In the opening days of 2020 modernists may have rejoiced over two significant events. On January 1, works published in 1924 entered the public domain. On January 2, Princeton University opened to the public the recently uncrated 1,131 letters from T. S. Eliot to Emily Hale. In these two opposing examples of the modernist archive 2020 stages a central tension between diffusion and enclosure,...
Mar 23, 2020
The apocalypse stressed me out. This is an obviously true, maybe irresponsibly glib statement in material terms—the sixth extinction, global pandemic, nuclear annihilation, space rocks, methane farts, these all terrify me daily in ways that I have the luxury to be terrified.
Mar 2, 2020