Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of English

Content Description

1 online resource (vii, 169 pages)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Bret Benjamin

Committee Members

Eric Keenaghan


Adorno, Fitzgerald, Fordism, Hemingway, modernism, Stein, Capitalism in literature, Modernism (Aesthetics), American literature

Subject Categories

American Literature | Arts and Humanities


Fordism and Modernist Forms argues that Fordism is an American manifestation of a global tendency towards concentration and rationalization that we know as "monopoly capitalism." Fordism, as part of the historical transition from competitive to monopoly capitalism, reshapes and reorganizes the structures of modern life - accentuating repetitive habits and efficient behavior, replacing craftsmanship with deskilled labor, and integrating consumer culture into identity formation. These socio-economic transformations obfuscate the actually existing structures that produce their uneven societies and the monotonies of modern, everyday "life" and, therefore, create an artistic crisis of representation as the individual increasingly relies on the prisms of ideology and reification to organize and narrate her own experience of empirical reality. "Modernism" is the name given to the aesthetic schools that attempt to represent, beyond mere empiricism, this chameleon modernity; and for American Modernism that means representing a specifically Fordist modernity.