Rebecca Beasley

Rebecca BeasleyRebecca Beasley is University Lecturer in English at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of The Queen’s College. She is the author of Ezra Pound and the Visual Culture of Modernism (Cambridge University Press, 2007) and Theorists of Modernist Poetry (Routledge, 2007), and, with Philip Ross Bullock, editor of Russia in Britain: From Melodrama to Modernism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013). She is currently working on a book-length study of the impact of Russian culture on British literary modernism, Russomania.  In 2014, she is Chair of the British Association of Modernist Studies. She initiated the Anglo-Russian Research Network with Matthew Taunton in 2011.

Russomania argues that the British cultural construction of Russia not only fed into, but focused and reformed the defining questions of modernism: the relation between writer and audience (individual vs. mass), the relation between the literary work and lived experience (the nature of realism), and the relation between language and action (abstraction vs. the concrete).  Chapters analyse points of conjunction between Russian and British culture, such as the simple life movement, ideologies of translation, the development of Russian as a university subject, the idea of the intelligentsia, varieties of theatrical performance, the cinema, and the concept of internationalism. Though canonical literary figures (Joseph Conrad, T.S. Eliot, Ford Madox Ford, D.H. Lawrence, Wyndham Lewis, Katherine Mansfield, George Bernard Shaw and Virginia Woolf) are significant in this narrative, they are studied here primarily for the roles they, and their texts, play in broader cultural networks and institutional histories, and much less well known writers, translators and mediators (Iris Barry, Huntly Carter, John Cournos, John Gould Fletcher, Olive Garnett, Stephen Graham, William Gerhardie), are at least as important.


Relevant publications

‘Vortorussophilia’, in Vorticism: New Perspectives, ed. by Mark Antliff and Scott Klein (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 33-50

Ed. with Philip Ross Bullock, Russia in Britain: From Melodrama to Modernism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013) (includes ‘Introduction: Against Influence: On Writing about Russian Culture in Britain’, and ‘Reading Russian: Russian Studies and the Literary Canon’)

‘In violet ink: Virginia Woolf’s “translations”‘, Times Literary Supplement, 1 February 2013, 14-15

‘On Not Knowing Russian: The Translations of Virginia Woolf and S.S. Kotelianskii’, Modern Language Review, 108 (2013), 1-29

Love and Honour, or the Adventures of Serinda‘, in Senate House Library: University of London, ed. by Christopher Pressler and Karen Attar (London: Scala, 2012)

‘Modernism’s Translations’, in The Oxford Handbook of Global Modernisms, ed. by Mark Wollaeger with Matt Eatough (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012), pp. 551-70

Ed. with Philip Ross Bullock, Translating Russia, 1890-1935 (special issue of Translation and Literature), 20 (2011)

‘Russia and the Invention of the Modernist Intelligentsia’, in Geographies of Modernism: Literatures, Cultures, Spaces, ed. by Peter Brooker and Andrew Thacker (London: Routledge, 2005), pp. 19-30

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