Intellectual Women, Dissatisfied Modernities, Madrid 13–14 November

Sanz Astrid

The conference Intellectual Women, Dissatisfied Modernities took place at Complutense University in Madrid 13–14 November 2014. It was organized by our Spanish colleagues from the COST Action, Amelia Sanz and Begona Reguiero and gathered several of the former COST Action members. The Swedish Women Writes on Export project was represented by Jenny Bergenmar. The title of the presentation was “Women writing the provincial. A new nationalism or a transnational critique of modernity?” and it addressed the complex relation between gender and modernity, and between the provincial and the national.

The provincial stories of female authors around 1900 tend to be interpreted as traditional rather than modern, though they may also be read as a way of expressing a dissatisfied modernity, addressing also what is left out and discarded in early modernism. The examples of Selma Lagerlöf and Grazia Deledda show that the role as a provincial storyteller could function as a useful position for female authors. Examples from the Spanish reception of Selma Lagerlöf also show that while Lagerlöf’s works were appropriated for nationalist purposes in Germany, this was usually not the case in Spain, where her translated texts seem to preserve their regionality.

Astrid Kuldsom and Yanouk de Groot from The Huygens Institute presented the outcome of the COBWWWEB Clarin-project, in which the Selma Lagerlöf Archive participated. Plans for a Horizon 2020 proposal was also discussed.

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