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Sarah Applegate

on 13 January 2012

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Transcript of Modernism

Authors abandoned traditional forms and techniques
Worked to capture the essence of modern times in form and content
Post WWI = disillusionment and chaos
Confusion about ideas and values
Divided feeling shown in fragmented writing
Abandoned traditional plot structure
Discarded expositions and resolutions
Stories often begin and end arbitrarily
Themes of uncertainty, bewilderment, and meaninglessness of life
Implied themes - not directly stated - readers draw their own conclusions
Allusions = (define)
Stream-of-Consciousness = (define)
"You are all a lost generation" - Gertrude Stein
Also known as exiles
Many settled in Paris
Used the phrase "Lost Generation" to describe those who were disillusioned by the first World War
Why were they "lost"?
Big Names
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
Ernest Hemingway - A Farewell to Arms, The Sun Also Rises
William Faulkner - The Sound and the Fury
John Steinbeck - Grapes of Wrath
Death should not be feared.
Sometimes wars must be fought to correct that which is not right.
Soldiers should be compassionate and understanding of their enemy’s cause.
In most situations there is a better way than war to resolve the conflict.
Soldiers often experience positive personal growth as a result of war
World War One = 1914-1918
"Roaring Twenties" = 1920-1929
1930s = The Great Depression
"The immensely traumatic nature of the [WWI] experience dashed basic assumptions: realism seemed bankrupt when faced with the fundamentally fantastic nature of trench warfare, as exemplified by books such as Erich Maria Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front. Moreover, the view that mankind was making slow and steady moral progress came to seem ridiculous in the face of the senseless slaughter. The First World War fused the harshly mechanical geometric rationality of technology with the nightmarish irrationality of myth.
Acting virtuously brings about good.
How might a devastating world event (like World War One) impact the literature of the time?
Rebelled against sentimentality
Clear expression, everyday speech
Precise images

Big Names:
William Carlos Williams
Ezra Pound "In a Station at the Metro" (page 700)
H.D. (Hilda Doolittle)
The first abstract style of modern art
Attempt to bring organization to feelings of chaos

Pablo Picasso - Factory, Horta de Ebbo (1909)
Georges Braque - Violin and Jug

Literary Modernism Summary Clip
Full transcript