Modernism and Melancholia Writing as Countermourning
- ISBN 13:
- ISBN 10:
- Format: Hardcover
- Copyright: 11/27/2013
- Publisher: Oxford University Press
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Paying close attention to writings by Andrei Bely, Franz Kafka, and Virginia Woolf, Sanja Bahun identifies in modernist fiction a deliberate use of the symptomatology of melancholia to reinvigorate the genre of the novel and address the complexities of contemporary history. Such an exercise establishes writing as a mourning ritual that self-consciously refuses to "heal" or "cure." To describe this paradoxical writing practice, Bahun proposes the term "countermourning." Reversing-or renewing-the ways in which the conceptual scope of melancholia is utilized in modernist studies, this study positions itself at the crossroads of literary studies and intellectual history, and suggests a continuity between the shifting view of melancholia in global modernism.