Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts
Because Mina Loy, whose sharp-edged body of work presents a challenge to even the most astute readers of poetry, has been obscured by a sexist tradition for decades, her slow return to the forefront of modernist study constitutes a triumph in and of itself. As critics have rediscovered their enthusiasm for Loy‰Ûªs prickly Futurist-inspired feminism, however, their analyses have remained relatively shallow. Discussion of Loy has been so preoccupied with asserting her relevance that critics have neglected to afford Loy‰Ûªs poetry the full-bodied characterization its complexity necessitates. Like many self-identified modernists, Mina Loy used her writing as a means of tracing her search for a meaningful identity that would distinguish her from the background she thought uninspiring and insipid. The majority of her work is focused and personal, following Loy as she tries on and sheds a variety of labels before settling as a feminist. In this thesis, I argue that to show Loy‰Ûªs poetry the respect it deserves, critics must embrace the intersectional approach Loy herself employs in ‰ÛÏAnglo-Mongrels and the Rose.‰Û Complete understanding of Loy requires readers to synthesize analyses of her longing for Jewishness, her embrace and subsequent rejection of Futurist modernism, and her brand of revolutionarily-inclined difference feminism. I posit that taking such an approach to Loy‰Ûªs poetry enables us to at last adequately appreciate a woman who would settle only for an identity that offered her complete belonging without objectionable baggage or outside blemish.
Pottersmith, Mara, "Mongrel-Girl As Poet: Mina Loy's Lifelong Search for Modernist Identity" (2012). Honors Theses. 58.