Katarzyna Deja (Jagiellonian University)


Katarzyna Deja, PhD – lecturer in Polish literature of late 19th and early 20th century at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, member of International Association of Polish Studies, author of Polish Literary Japonism [Polski Japonizm Literacki]. She has published articles on transculturality and transcultural roots of Polish literature of early modernism. Her particular interests are Polish and European modernism, orientalism, postcolonialism and world literature.


The Global Turn in Modernist Studies. A Polish Perspective

In his article Uncanny Modernism Stephen Ross states that “the one topic of discussion you can count on hearing at conferences of the Modernist Studies Association (MSA) is the question of what modernism is and how it is to be determined”. Indeed, the discussions on a definition of the term modernism seem to be never-ending, one can however discern a general trend of gradual yet systematic widening of the field – both in time and, especially in recent years, in space. One of the first to notice the geographical expansion of the notion of modernism were Douglas Mao and Rebecca L. Walkowitz, who in 2008 in their article The New Modernist Studies declared that “there can be no doubt that modernist studies is undergoing a transnational turn”. Today the global turn in modernist studies is more visible than ever and produces new and exciting research that transcends national and cultural boundaries. However, it seems that the implementation of this newly discovered globality does not always comes easy, especially in countries such as Poland, which occupy a peculiar place in planetary literary circulation – not in the center but not at the margins as well. My aim here is twofold – to place Poland – and Central Europe in general – on the map of the new type of transnational and transcultural research on modernism and to ascertain how and to what extend global turn manifests itself within local field of study.