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The literary reception of Nietzschean ideas in relation to selected works of modernist literature

Emmanuel, Alexandra (2010) The literary reception of Nietzschean ideas in relation to selected works of modernist literature. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

The purpose of this study is to provide the beginnings of a clear account of the correspondences between the initial reception of Nietzschean ideas and selected works of modernist writing by the Anglophone intelligentsia. In particular, the aim of this study is to provide a framework for exploring the Nietzschean undercurrents in the work of such figures as George Bernard Shaw, Dora Marsden, Wyndham Lewis, and James Joyce. Departing from traditional studies of influence and their method, the present account will examine the correspondences between the original reception of Nietzsche's ideas and their later absorption and development in the work of these writers and intellectuals with a special emphasis on the little-magazine culture of the period. As will be shown, in such avant-garde forums as The Eagle and the Serpent, The New Age (and its predecessor the Leeds Arts Club), The Freewoman/The New Freewoman/The Egoist, one sees the cross-fertilization of Nietzschean discourses with the then-contemporary theories of social, cultural and aesthetic egoism/individualism. These periodical and artistic coteries illustrate the close relationship between the reception of Nietzschean ideas and the tradition of radical literary modernism, an intellectual and artistic milieu that was progressive, experimental, and avant-garde in nature. The aim of this thesis is to consider and examine possible ways in which the contemporary discourses of 'radical Nietzscheanism' interact with the aesthetic agendas of these periodicals in general - and the individual agendas of Shaw, Marsden, Lewis, and Joyce in particular. I attempt to contextualize the work and thought of these individuals, to situate their texts within a larger avant-garde milieu receptive to Nietzsche, and to consider the ways in which they affect and are affected by it.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts (Leeds) > School of English (Leeds)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.578625
Depositing User: Ethos Import
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2014 12:14
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2014 12:14
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/5409

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