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Returning the Gift – Modernism and the Thought of Exchange - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Returning the Gift: Modernism and the Thought of Exchange

Rebecca Colesworthy


The decades following World War I saw a widespread turn across disciplines to questions about the nature and role of gifts: What is a gift? What do gifts mean and do? Which individuals and institutions have the authority to give? Returning the Gift argues that these questions centrally shaped literary modernism. The book begins by revisiting the locus classicus of twentieth-century gift theory, Marcel Mauss’s The Gift: The Form and Reason for Exchange in Archaic Societies, to show that, his title notwithstanding, the gift Mauss envisions is a distinctively modern phenomenon. Subsequent chapter ... More

Keywords: gift, modernist literature, gender studies, literary theory, Virginia Woolf, Jean Rhys, Gertrude Stein, H.D. (Hilda Doolittle)

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780198778585
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2018 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198778585.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Rebecca Colesworthy, author
Independent Scholar and Acquisitions Editor, SUNY Press