Chapter

Urban Spaces “In the Cage”

Patricia McKee

in Reading Constellations

Published in print March 2014 | ISBN: 9780199333905
Published online April 2014 | e-ISBN: 9780199359707 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199333905.003.0005
Urban Spaces “In the Cage”

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“In the Cage” demonstrates a confluence of technological innovation and the dreamscape that occupies the imagination of the urban worker. In both, history is emptied out in order to produce an illusion of progress. The telegraphist extends her perceptions by means of images and stories already in circulation in modern London, inserting material pulled out of other popular media into the breaks and gaps of telegraphed messages. While her extensions of experience occur in keeping with modern progress, James insists on the losses incurred in these experiences: losses of the different histories and parts of self that would interrupt such flows.

Keywords: Henry James; “In the Cage”; Walter Benjamin; London; history; technological innovation

Chapter.  11625 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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