Sarah Cole (Columbia), The Wells Era
In her book-in-progress on H. G. Wells, Sarah Cole will make the case for a full revaluation of H.G. Wells's work for scholars of modernism. A major figure spanning literary, political and cultural spheres in the first half of the century, Wells has been almost entirely neglected by literary critics. In reconsidering his achievements, Cole aims to provide a new prism for reading the modernist period. In this talk, taken from the book's first chapter, Cole analyses key aspects of Wells's style with several aims: to account for Wells's massive world-wide audience; to demonstrate the nature of his writerly innovations across different genres; and to suggest that modernism itself might be newly legible in the terms set by Wells.