“The Modernist Party” is a 30-minute simulation exercise devised by the author, in which undergraduate English students role-play modernist figures at an imaginary party held in London in 1922. The simulation takes place in the first seminar of a 22-week course on English literary modernism and is preceded by a general discussion about the nature of parties and a more specialized discussion about the functioning of parties in certain modernist texts: James Joyce’s “The Dead” (1914), Katherine Mansfield’s “The Garden Party” (1922), and Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse (1927). The exercise offers the general pedagogical advantages associated with simulation (a type of role-play). It also provides topic-specific benefits: making modernist ideas more accessible to students; offering insights into specific modernist preoccupations and practices (the idea of space/place, the concept of the everyday, and the phenomenon of networking); and providing an experiential model of learning that resonates with modernist texts.


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pp. 86-98
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