chapter  4
7 Pages

‘The Museum of Their Encounter’: The Collision of Past and Present in the Fiction of Djuna Barnes

Djuna Barnes was born in 1892 in New York State and died in Greenwich Village in 1982. Although spending seventy years of her life in America, she is chiefly remembered for her sojourn in Paris during the 1920s. She is termed a modernist writer and is compared with other modernists such as Eliot and Joyce. Yet her work bears little relation to theirs, being closer to that of women writers of the period such as Natalie Clifford Barney and Mina Loy. How useful the term modernist is in relation to Barnes’s expansive career remains a matter for speculation.