Gender Politics and British Women Writers of the 1930s

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    Gender Politics and British Women Writers of the 1930s

    Today's focus on the 1930s as a time of radical politics paving the way for the apocalypse of the Second World War ignores the complexity of the decade's cultural responses, especially those by British women writers who highlighted gender issues within their contemporary political climate. The decade's literature is often understood to capture the political unrest, either narrating people's chaotic movement or their paralysed shock. This book argues that 1930s novels collapse the distinction between movement and standstill and calls this phenomenon Dynamic Stasis. This Dynamic Stasis thematically and structurally informs the novels of Nancy Mitford, Stevie Smith, Rosamond Lehmann and Jean Rhys. By disrupting the oft-repeated cliché of the 1930s as the age of political extremes, gender politics and negotiations of femininity can emerge from the discursive periphery. This book therefore corrects a persistent gender blind spot, which opens up a (re)consideration of authors that have been overlooked in literary criticism of 1930s to this day.
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    Königshausen & Neumann
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