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Commonwealth of LettersBritish Literary Culture and the Emergence of Postcolonial Aesthetics$
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Peter J. Kalliney

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199977970

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199977970.001.0001

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Modernist Networks and Late Colonial Intellectuals

Modernist Networks and Late Colonial Intellectuals

(p.1) 1. Modernist Networks and Late Colonial Intellectuals
Commonwealth of Letters

Peter J. Kalliney

Oxford University Press

Chapter One examines the relationship between metropolitan and colonial writers at midcentury. It discusses the BBC as a model of a metropolitan cultural institution that promoted collaboration between metropolitan intellectuals and their colonial counterparts. It argues that aesthetic autonomy was a key modernist doctrine that facilitated cooperation across the racial divide. Black, colonial writers, this chapter contends, were instrumental in explaining the relevance of modernist aesthetics to a decolonizing world, using the concept of aesthetic autonomy to insist that the sphere of high literature could transcend the injustices of a colonial system based on racial discrimination.

Keywords:   Modernist Literature, Postcolonial Literature, Radio Broadcasting, Race, Matthew Arnold, WEB Du Bois, CLR James

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