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“Her symbol was civil war”: Recovering Muriel Rukeyser’s Lost Spanish Civil War Novel

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)416-439
Number of pages24
JournalMFS: Modern Fiction Studies
Issue number2
DatePublished - 2013


In 1936, the American poet Muriel Rukeyser traveled to Spain to report on the People’s Olympiad, an alternative to Hitler’s Berlin games. Instead, she witnessed the outbreak of civil war. Rukeyser’s writings on her experience span more than forty years, including a lost, unpublished novel, Savage Coast. Recently recovered from her archive, the novel is significant because it hybridizes the forms of aesthetic and political modernism and provides a more complex understanding of how women modernists write about politics and history through modes that both interrogate and transform the boundaries of genre.

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Special issue: Women’s Fiction, New Modernist Studies, and Feminism



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