Leonard Diepeveen, Dalhousie University

English Professor Halifax, Nova Scotia leonard.diepeveen@dal.ca Office: (902) 494-6912

Bio/Research

After writing about the place of difficulty in twentieth century culture, I am turning my attention to fraud. The project, tentatively titled Dubious Modernism, looks at how suspicion worked as an interpretative practice in the creation of modernism. How did suspicions that modernism was a fraud ...

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Bio/Research

After writing about the place of difficulty in twentieth century culture, I am turning my attention to fraud. The project, tentatively titled Dubious Modernism, looks at how suspicion worked as an interpretative practice in the creation of modernism. How did suspicions that modernism was a fraud shape the aesthetic landscape of the first half of the twentieth century? This project will explore how fraud discourse unleashed some major conceptual battles: 1) a struggle over the place of theory in art, with skeptics arguing that reliance on theory was both banal and an ethical failing; 2) sincerity's nervous place in modern aesthetics; 3) the relationship between mass behaviour and trust in gaining cultural power; and 4) the awkward place of intent in twentieth-century aesthetics. As a companion to this book, I am putting together an anthology of early twentieth-century parodic interventions into modernism, including hoaxes, doggerel, cartoons, staged trials, mock interviews, parodies in adjacent media (such as futurist fashion shows), and mock manifestos.



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