Forthcoming: Portuguese Literary & Cultural Studies


“Lusophone Modernisms Past Their Centennials”
Guest Editors: Ricardo Vasconcelos (San Diego State University) & Mirhiane Mendes de Abreu (Universidade Federal de São Paulo)

The period of 2015 through 2022 witnessed the highlighting of multiple centennials associated with Lusophone Modernisms, through colloquia, edited volumes, monographs, as well as other events and cultural artifacts. In 2015 there were international colloquia on the Portuguese journal Orpheu, in Portugal, Brazil and Italy, which led to various publications. This was shortly followed by the anniversary of Portugal Futurista, in 2017, commemorated in very much the same way. 2022 saw the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Brazilian Semana de Arte Moderna (itself, of course, already anchored in the centennial of Brazilian independence). The one-hundredth birthday of the Semana was recognized in conferences in Brazil and abroad, sometimes in events that discussed Brazilian modernism alongside other centennials (e.g. that of the publication of Joyce's Ulysses in 1922). 2021 and 2022 saw, in Portugal, a new focus on the contributions to Portuguese Modernism offered by the Comício dosNovos and the magazine Contemporânea.

This vast array of congresses, colloquia and publications centered on what are usually perceived as central aesthetic movements in their respective cultural systems should lead us to reflect upon their broader achievements in terms of renewing our perspectives. Moreover, they should make us anticipate new lines of inquiry in the second century of Lusophone Modernism studies. What are the essential changes in the way(s) we perceive Lusophone Modernist authorship and performative practices, more than 100 years after? Which transformations, if any, materialized in the field, since 2015 and owing to these events? What are the impacts of new(er) approaches to Lusophone Modernisms, in literary and cultural studies, from ecocriticism to crip theory and the digital humanities, among others? How has our perception of the international relations of these modernisms with other avant-garde practices (i.e., Italian Futurism) been altered or evolved? In what way has current post-colonial discourse added to our perception of race-related aspects within Modernism? Are new contributions from feminist and gender theory upending the ways in which we observe these movements? What has changed in our perception of the links between modernism and national identities? Although celebrating cultural and literary anniversaries in academic settings is not new, and its benefits are evident in terms of the enhanced scholarly dialogues and scholarship, were there any limitations in the actual format of the events held that may have been inherent to the specific movements studied? What are striking elements of these centenarian modernisms in Portuguese that continued to go unnoticed, despite the clear push to study them in greater detail?