ENGL 8203: Modernism and Its Magazines (Spring 2022)

Week 1 (1/13) – Introduction

Scholes and Wulfman, Chapter 1 – “Ezra Pound, Founder of Modern Periodical Studies”


Week 2 (1/20) – Feminist Magazines

Scholes and Wulfman, Chapter 2 – “Modernity and the Rise of Modernism: A Review” (26-43)

Scholes and Wulfman, Chapter 6 – “How to Study a Modern Magazine” (143-67)

Read Robert Scholes, “General Introduction to the Marsden Magazines,” Barbara Green, “Introduction to The Freewoman,” and first issue of The Freewoman: https://modjourn.org/journal/freewoman/

Read Susan Solomon, “Introduction to The New Freewoman and The Egoist” and first issue of The New Freewoman:


Find one item in another issue of either The Freewoman or The New Freewoman and be prepared to discuss it in class.


Week 3 (1/27) – Reading Advertisements

George Bornstein, “How to Read a Page” (D)

Scholes & Wulfman, “Modernism’s Other: The Art of Advertising”

Scribner’s, February 1913: https://modjourn.org/issue/bdr499548/

The Crisis, February 1913: https://modjourn.org/issue/bdr520168/


Week 4 (2/3) – Visual Art

Possible visit to Special Collections, 5th floor McFarlin Library, to view original magazines.

Scholes & Wulfman, “Modernism in the Magazines: The Case of Visual Art”



Week 5 (2/10) – A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) (whole thing)

  • Read first: Political Nationalism and Irish History, pp. 225-30; Michael Davitt, “The Phoenix Park Murders” pp. 236-44; “Address by the Bishops of Ireland” pp. 245-46.
  • Be sure to read any of the scholarly materials at the back which pertain to your interests or provide information you needed to grasp the novel.


Week 6 (2/17) – A Portrait serialized

The Egoist (Feb. 2, 1914): https://modjourn.org/issue/bdr519988/

Read at least one other issue of The Egoist containing an instalment of A Portrait from a section that particularly interested you, and be prepared to bring it up in class.


Week 7 (2/24) – World War I

Vincent Sherry, “The Great War and Literary Modernism in England” (D), and three magazine issues quoted in the article:

Jennifer Keene, “Images of Racial Pride: African American Propaganda Posters in the First World War” (D)

  • Read through the October 1914 “Children’s Issue” of The Crisis, looking particularly at “War” by M.W.O (297): https://modjourn.org/issue/bdr519286/
  • Read through the June 1918 “Soldiers Number” of The Crisis, paying special attention to the cover (reproduction of a poster), the Editoral section (59-61), and Fenton Johnson’s “War Profiles” (65): https://modjourn.org/issue/bdr511283/

We will discuss the items listed above, but take notes on another content item in at least one issue that you found interesting and be prepared to bring it up in class.


Week 8 (3/3) – World War I & Vorticism

Marjorie Perloff, “The Great War and the European Avant-Garde” (D)

Paul Peppis, “‘Surrounded by a multitude of other Blasts’: Vorticism and the Great War” (D)

Mark Morrisson, “BLAST: An Introduction”

BLAST no. 1 (June 1914)

BLAST no.2 “The War Number” (July 1915)



Week 9 (3/10) – Dada


“Dada: The Anti-War Art Movement”: http://www.arthistoryarchive.com/arthistory/dada/arthistory_dada.html

Emily Hage, “The Magazine as Strategy: Tristan Tzara’s Dada and the Seminal Role of Dada Art Journals in the Dada Movement” (D)

Tristan Tzara, “Dada Manifesto 1918” (D)

See Databases for more Dada Magazines




Week 11 (3/24) – Surrealism

Charles Moffat & Suzanne MacNevin, “The Origins of Surrealism”: http://www.arthistoryarchive.com/arthistory/surrealism/Origins-of-Surrealism.html

Charles Cramer and Kim Grant, “Surrealism and Psychoanalysis”: https://smarthistory.org/surrealism-and-psychoanalysis/

André Breton, “Manifesto of Surrealism” (1924) (D)

transition no. 2 (May 1927) (D) – Read as much of it as you can, but we’ll focus on these in class plus whatever you bring to the table:

  • James Joyce, “Continuation of A Work in Progress” (Finnegans Wake) (94)
  • Artwork (109-12)
  • Paul Eluard, “In Company (Surrealist text)” (112)
  • Sidney Hunt, “white limp droop UP” and “design V” (134-35)
  • Bravig Imbs poems (136-37)
  • Robert Sage, “La Réalité” (160-63)
  • Elliot Paul, “The New Nihilism” (164-68) – Wyndham Lewis responds to this at length in The Enemy no. 3 (below)

The Enemy no. 3 (1929) (D) – Read “The Diabolical Principle” (9-85); we will discuss the whole essay but definitely focus on the sections dealing with transition, Surrealism, and politics:

  • “The answer of the massed editorial cast of “Transition” to the ‘Enemy’” (16)
  • “The Political Philistine” (19)
  • “The New Philistinism” (24)
  • “My Bill of Rights” (27)
  • “The ‘New Romanticism’ = New Nihilism” (30)
  • “Paul’s own account of his ‘New Nihilism’” (32)
  • “Give the devil his due!—Enter, from trap-door, ‘The Diabolical Principle’” (37)
  • “The ‘merging’ of dream and reality, likewise of art and life” (40)
  • “The objective truth and the private mental world of the isolated mind” (41)
  • “The political exploitation of the magical power of art” (42)
  • “The infinity-phobia of Super-reality” (43)
  • “How superrealists are ‘Faustians’” (43)
  • “Hatred as a necessary drug” (46)
  • “Hatred as prescribed for the Intellectual and as prescribed for the Mob” (47)
  • “What draws ‘Transition’” (48)
  • “The Popularisation of Disgust” (49)
  • “The vulgarization of the vision of genius to political ends” (54)
  • “The happiness of the greatest numbers or what Civilization must mean” (56)
  • “The bourgeois non-super democratic Pauline Superman” (64)
  • “Art as a bomb” (70)
  • “The hunting down and destruction of ‘the great’” (71)
  • “Pure Revolution” (74)
  • “The ‘adolescent state-of-mind’ and revolutionary views” (75)
  • “An individual in politics is impossible to-day” (76)
  • “The eventual success of Communism? Will its most characteristic form resemble an eternal ‘transition’ or democratic ‘progressiveness’?” (80)
  • “The ‘sensual average’ super-realist” (81)
  • “‘Beyond Lenin’” (82)

If time: watch l’Étoile de mer (The Starfish) (1928) (15 minutes), by Man Ray: https://vimeo.com/479273825


Week 12 (3/31) – Surrealism, Magazines, Film

Selected readings from Friedburg, Marcus, et al. on film, surrealism, and psychoanalysis (pp. TBA) (D)

Close Up (May 1928) (D)

See the bound volume for more issues: https://archive.org/details/closeup02macp/page/n11/mode/2up

Bryher, “What shall you do in the war?” (Close Up, June 1933) (D)

Watch Borderline (1930)



Week 13 (4/7)

In-class workshop (bring laptops):

  • Electronic editing/encoding with the TEI Guidelines (http://tei-c.org)
  • MODS metadata encoding


Week 14 (4/14)

Franco Moretti, “Introduction” and “Graphs” (D)

Lev Manovich, “What is Visualization?” (D)

Ben Peters, “Digital” (D)

In-class workshop (bring laptops): Introduction to data visualization with Voyant Tools


Week 15 (4/21)

Archival Theory

  • Werner & Voss, “Introduction to Poetics of the Archive” (D)
  • Jacques Derrida, selection from Archive Fever (D)
  • Michel Foucault, selection from “The Historical a priori and the Archive” (D)
  • Scholes & Wulfman, “The Hole in the Archive”
  • Jeffrey Drouin, “Surrogate” (D)