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The New Europe and the New World: Eliot, Masaryk, and the Geopolitics of National Culture

Ayers, David S (2016) The New Europe and the New World: Eliot, Masaryk, and the Geopolitics of National Culture. Modernist Cultures, 11 (1). pp. 8-25. ISSN 1753-8629. (doi:10.3366/mod.2016.0123) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/mod.2016.0123

Abstract

This paper asserts that while geo-politics is too often treated as an extrinsic force in cultural studies, it is in fact a culturally constitutive force and geo-political cultural actors should be treated as a dominant force in (national-) cultural formation. This is of especial importance in the relationship between Europe and the United States. The paper makes this point by comparing the cultural-political objectives of T. S. Eliot and Ezra Pound to the objectives of Thomas Masaryk. While the former are much-celebrated as cultural figures, they were only marginally and indirectly effective on the course of the shaping of European geo-politics. Although they frequently addressed such topics and plainly wished that their voices could be heard, they are mainly commentators. By contrast, Masaryk was the philosophy professor who founded the Czech nation in 1918 from his base at the School of Slavonic Studies at King's College London. The paper makes specific reference to Masaryk's methods of gaining influence in the United States, and with Woodrow Wilson in particular. Masaryk was an effective transnational cultural actor and his case therefore serves to expand the category of the transnational culture-subject beyond examples such as Ezra Pound, a tragic victim of geopolitics, or Eliot, whose strategy of American intervention in Europe was a commentary on actions and outcomes shaped by others.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.3366/mod.2016.0123
Uncontrolled keywords: europe geopolitics nation nationalism literature culture
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DB Austria
E History America > E151 United States (General)
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of English
Faculties > Humanities > School of English > Centre for Modern Poetry
Depositing User: David Ayers
Date Deposited: 17 May 2016 19:00 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 17:21 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/55487 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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