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I Do, I Undo, I Redo: The Textual Genesis of Modernist Selves written by Finn Fordham

 

I Do, I Undo, I Redo: The Textual Genesis of Modernist Selves written by Finn Fordham

Overview:

This book is a study of writing processes of six modernist authors: Hopkins, Yeats, Conrad, Forster, Joyce, and Woolf, from the 'golden age of manuscripts'. Finn Fordham examines how these processes relate to selfhood and subjectivity, both of which are generally considered to have come under an intense examination and reformulation during the modernist period. The study addresses several questions: what are the relations between writing and subjectivity? To what extent is a 'self' considered as a completed product like a book? Or how are selves, if considered as things 'in process' or 'constructs', reflections of the processes of writing? How do the experiences of writing inform thematic concerns within texts about identity?

There are three theoretical and methodological chapters (about 'genetic' criticism, about critical studies of selfhood within modernism, and the 'effacement' of manuscripts in philosophies of the subject). There then follow chapters on each of the six authors, with a different topic on each - compression, selection, doubling, hollowing out, multiplying and class. The study comprises much new material from archives, and many fresh ideas stemming from the combination of different critical approaches: genetic, psychological, political criticism and close reading. Readers of its contents described it as 'excellent', 'a very creative study', 'original, timely and extremely suggestive'.

Synopsis:

This book is a study of writing processes of six modernist authors: Hopkins, Yeats, Conrad, Forster, Joyce, and Woolf, from the 'golden age of manuscripts'. Finn Fordham examines how these processes relate to selfhood and subjectivity, both of which are generally considered to have come under an intense examination and reformulation during the modernist period. The study addresses several questions: what are the relations between writing and subjectivity? To what extent is a 'self' considered as a completed product like a book? Or how are selves, if considered as things 'in process' or 'constructs', reflections of the processes of writing? How do the experiences of writing inform thematic concerns within texts about identity?

There are three theoretical and methodological chapters (about 'genetic' criticism, about critical studies of selfhood within modernism, and the 'effacement' of manuscripts in philosophies of the subject). There then follow chapters on each of the six authors, with a different topic on each - compression, selection, doubling, hollowing out, multiplying and class. The study comprises much new material from archives, and many fresh ideas stemming from the combination of different critical approaches: genetic, psychological, political criticism and close reading. Readers of its contents described it as 'excellent', 'a very creative study', 'original, timely and extremely suggestive'.

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Title: I Do, I Undo, I Redo: The Textual Genesis of Modernist Selves

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