The dearest of cemeteries: European intertexts in Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer

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This essay reads Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer (1934) as the trace of a belated expatriate moment that forms an American literary nexus by drawing together a number of provocative European artistic contexts. Miller's relationship to the rhetoric of the manifesto is discussed, as is the creation of a powerful literary persona and narrating voice from the traces of a tissue of intertextual quotations. Miller draws on contemporary tropes of death, decadence and last things, and in the process, I argue, brings late Romantic and early twentieth-century texts from Nietzsche, Spengler, Strindberg, Goethe, Joyce, lie Faure and Giovanni Papini together to articulate a late apocalyptic modernism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-215
Number of pages29
JournalEuropean Journal of American Culture
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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