Baroque between the Wars: Alternative Style in the Arts, 1918-1939

Jane Stevenson

Research output: Book/ReportBook

1 Citation (Scopus)


This book re-examines the arts in the 1920s and 1930s, arguing that rather than being dominated by modernism, the period saw a dialogue between modern baroque—eclectic, playful, and open to influence from popular culture—and modernism, which was theory-driven, didactic, and exclusive, features which suggest that it was essentially a neoclassical movement. Thus the period is characterized by the ancient competition between baroque and classical forms of expression. The author argues that both forms were equally valid responses to the challenge of modernity by setting painting and literature in the context of ‘minor arts’ such as interior design, photography, fashion, ballet, and flower arranging, and by highlighting the social context and sexual politics of creative production. The chapters of the book pursue a set of interconnected themes, focused by turns on artists, artefacts, clients, places, and publicists, in order to test and explore the central idea.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages336
ISBN (Print)9780198808770
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jan 2018


  • literature
  • modernism
  • homosexuality
  • interior decoration
  • baroque
  • decorative arts
  • design


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