Modernism in the Green: Public Greens in Modern Literature and Culture, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Modernism in the Green

Public Greens in Modern Literature and Culture, 1st Edition

By Julia Daniel, Margaret Elizabeth Konkol


224 pages

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Hardback: 9780367349479
pub: 2019-08-01
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Modernism in the Green traces a trans-Atlantic modernist fascination with the creation, use, and representation of the modern green. From the verdant public commons in the heart of cities to the lookout points on mountains in national parks, planned green spaces serve as felicitous stages for the performance of modernism. In its focus on designed and public green zones,Modernism in the Green offers a new perspective on modernism’s overlapping investments in the arts, politics, urbanism, race, class, gender, and the nature-culture divide. This collection of essays is the first to explore the prominent and diverse ways greens materialize in modern literature and culture, along with the manner in which modernists represented them. This volume presents the idea of "the green" as a point of exploration, as our contributors analyze social-organic spaces ranging from public parks to roadways and refuse piles. Like the term "green," one that evokes both more-than-human natural zones and crafted public meeting places, these chapters uncover the social and spatial intersection of nature and culture in the very architecture of parks, gardens, buildings, highways, and dumps. This book argues that such greens facilitate modernists’ exploration of how nature can manifest in an era of increasing urbanization and mechanization and what identities and communities the green now enables or prevents.

Table of Contents


Julia E. Daniel and Margaret Konkol

Section 1: Green Grounds

"Free Land": Central Park and Racial Erasure in the Proslavery United States

Allison Siehnel

Hospital, Parlor, Fresco, Posey: Metaphors for Parks in the Public Lectures of Frederick Law Olmsted

Julia E. Daniel

Modernist Picturesque: Representing Urban Green Space on London Transport Posters, 1908-1940

Nora Kuster

By Chicago, For Chicago? Listening for the City in the Creation of Grant Park Music Festival

Katherine Brucher

Section 2: Green Texts

A Modernist Walk in the Park with Virginia Woolf

Bonnie Kime Scott

Green Agoraphobia: Architectural Cures in Baudelaire and Kafka

Yelizaveta Goldfarb Moss

Park Blues: Langston Hughes, Racial Exclusion, and the Park Ballad

Margaret Konkol

A More-Than-Human Green: National Parks and Animality in Marianne Moore’s "An Octopus"

Hatley Clifford

The Way of the Road: Travelling through Yosemite National Park in Gertrude Stein’s Everybody’s Autobiography

Maxwell Woods

The Imagination’s Meadows in William Carlos Williams’s Spring and All

Michael D. Sloane

About the Authors

Julia E. Daniel is an Assistant Professor of English at Baylor University. Her research interests include modern American poetics and urban ecocriticism, as seen in her book Building Natures: Modern American Poetry, Landscape Architecture, and City Planning. Her work has also appeared in The Cambridge Companion to The Waste Land, The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Modernist Poetry, Modern Drama, and Critical Quarterly.

Margaret Konkol is an Assistant Professor of American literature and digital humanities at Old Dominion University. She is completing a book "Modernizing Nature: Modernist Poetry, Gender, Race, and Civic Space" which discusses poetry’s role in civic debates about the naturalness of rapidly modernizing gender and race hierarchies which were on display in public parks and gardens. Her essays and review essays appear in Hybrid Pedagogy, Modernism/modernity, Paideuma, and Textus: English Studies in Italy.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in World Literatures and the Environment

Routledge Studies in World Literatures and the Environment

Since the dawn of human artistic and cultural expression, the natural world and our complex and often vexed relationships with the other-than-human have been essential themes in such expression. This series seeks to offer an encompassing approach to literary explorations of environmental experiences and ideas, reaching from the earliest known literatures to the twenty-first century and accounting for vernacular approaches throughout the world. In recent decades, it has become clear that highly localized, non-Western forms of literary expression and scholarly analysis have much to contribute to ecocritical understanding—such studies, as well as examinations of European and North American literatures, are encouraged. Comparative treatments of literary works from different cultures, cultural expression in various media (including literature and connections with visual and performing arts, ecocinema, music, videogames, and material culture), and interdisciplinary scholarly methodologies would be ideal contributions to the series. What are the lessons regarding human-animal kinship that can be gleaned from indigenous songs in Africa, Amazonia, Oceania, the Americas, and other regions of the world? Which discourses of toxicity in the urban centers of contemporary East Asia and the post-industrial brownscapes of Europe and America might gain traction as we seek to balance human and ecological health and robust economies? What are some of the Third World expressions of postcolonial ecocriticism, posthumanism, material ecocriticism, gender-based ecocriticism, ecopoetics, and other avant-garde trends? How do basic concepts such as "wilderness" or "animal rights" or "pollution" find expression in diverse environmental voices and become imbricated with questions of caste, class, gender, politics, and ethnicity? The global circulation of culturally diverse texts provides resources for understanding and engaging with the environmental crisis. This series aims to provide a home for projects demonstrating both traditional and experimental approaches in environmental literary studies.

Series Editors:

Scott Slovic, University of Idaho, USA

Swarnalatha Rangarajan, Indian Institute of Technology Madras

Previous Editors:

Matthew Wynn Sivils, Iowa State University, USA

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