Largely overlooked in the booming scholarship on world literature, literary globalization, and transnational modernism, a world literature of socialist internationalism was imagined, written, theorized, and practiced in the aftermath of World War I, representing the first attempt to actualize the idea of world literature under the auspices of a social and political mass movement. This article develops and illustrates five theses about this internationalist world literature. It thereby sketches aspects of the history of internationalist world literature in Germany between 1918 and 1933 and formulates historical, historiographical, poetological, and literary and cultural theoretical interventions into the field of world literature studies. In particular, the article develops the notions of the transnational literary counterpublic and of realist modernism while tracing ideas about transnational class literatures and nonnormative imaginaries of the proletariat.

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