This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Putting The "Mod" In Modern: Modernist Authors

1421 words - 6 pages

Ezra Pound summed up modernism in three short words: “Make it new.” It is an imperative that his fellow writers applied to their own works, severing with the realists, whose concepts of narrative were less radical and more reader-friendly. Whether consciously or not, writers like James Joyce and Virginia Woolf applied Pound’s dictate by breaking with convention and applying a variety of innovative techniques. Two of the most telling methods are among those described by postmodernist writer John Barth, who noted “the radical disruption of linear flow of narrative” and “the frustration of conventional expectations concerning unity and coherence of plot and character” (278). Both of Barth’s descriptions apply to Joyce’s Ulysses and stories from Dubliners and to Woolf’s “Mark on the Wall” from her Monday or Tuesday collection.
Radical disruptions to chronological time are amply evidenced throughout the famous — and famously frustrating — Ulysses, but nowhere more than in episode 18, a long stream-of-consciousness piece from the perspective of Molly Bloom. Almost any excerpt from the section suffices to demonstrate Bloom’s observation about modernists, as Molly’s thoughts jump radically from topics as disparate as cooking, sex, and religion in a long diatribe marked by only eight sentence breaks in forty-two pages. Barth’s point is proven by these closing lines from the novel:
… he kissed me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes my mountain flower and first I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes. (682)
These lines would seem to indicate a traditional happy ending that would negate Barth’s assertions about modernist writers. However, the lines are actually part of a free-association flashback by Molly to the day when she accepted Leopold’s proposal. While the flowers, breasts, and perfume combine to create a heady mixture, readers must remember that present-tense Molly has just consummated an affair with Blazes Boylan, one of several paramours she has taken to bed during her marriage. She has also ruminated on Leopold’s indiscretions, which indicates their marriage is less than ideal. Even the line “as well him as another” undercuts any romantic intensity in the scene, indicating that Leopold was merely in the right place at the right time and is not, in fact, her soul mate. Joyce’s disruption of linear time comes to a head in these closing lines, as he uses asynchronous storytelling also as a way to frustrate any expectation of closure, even as he provides an ending that would, under other circumstances, provide exactly that.
Joyce scales back the stream-of-consciousness technique considerably in Dubliners, but still confounds traditional concepts of unity and coherence in plot and character throughout the...

Find Another Essay On Putting the "Mod" in Modern: Modernist Authors

Implications of Modernist Thought in Tender Is the Night

1103 words - 4 pages Implications of Modernist Thought in Tender Is the Night      The implications of modernist thought in F. Scott Fitzgeralds' Tender Is the Night, become apparent when conceptualizing crime and punishment. Besides the murder of the Negro in the Parisian hotel, the idea of crime is plastic; adultery, deceit, moral depravity barely have consequences. Actions committed with good intentions often end in despair, such as the marriage of

The Fire Sermon: An In-Depth Look at Modernist Poetry

1083 words - 4 pages Just in case the document does not open i have pasted my essay below. See you in class FCA's 1. Three paragraph response 2. Examples and citations form the poem (3 minimum) 3. Sophisticated language The Fire Sermon - an in-depth look at modernist poetry Humanity relies on its life lessons and morals to carry itself through time. Different ideals and points of view on human life mix and provide the diverse culture that humanity owns

Other Authors To Be Included in the Current Curriculum

2366 words - 9 pages beauty, complexity and multi-faceted nature of this book with limited success suggests the wide ranging merits of Lolita and the books place between the most important books of the century. I will argue that Lolita should be studied on the Literature in the Modern World module, because of its author’s relationship to the prominent modernists and their influence on his novels, which further serves to deepen the understanding of the modernist

"The Greek authors were the pioneers of modern day literature" Discuss this in relevence of texts you have studied. Text we studied ~Homer the Iilad book 22 ~Sopohcles King Oedipus ~Plato Crito

738 words - 3 pages The Greek authors were the pioneers of modern day literature. They were some of the very first to ignore practicality - they used their writing, not just to record the past, but to entertain. Art. The Greeks were the ones who took the first steps toward what we know as society today. The Greek authors were sophisticated, they were knowledgeable, but, most importantly, they knew how to conjure up a good story. And using their innovative skills in

Suspended in Time: Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway the element of time in a modernist novel

1963 words - 8 pages Suspended in Time:Virginia Woolf' Mrs. DallowayVirginia Woolf is forefront among modernist writers like T. S. Eliott and Joseph Conrad and is most notable for her stream-of-consciousness technique. Most critics cluster Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway with two of her own, Jacob's Room and To the Lighthouse as examples of a technique that represents a multi-narrative form. The result of this multi-point-of-view is a novel suspending time. Not only does time

Theme of Haunting in the Following Modernist Works: Rebecca, A Haunted House and The Painted Veil

2085 words - 8 pages motifs or themes that they deal with in Modernist novels is the theme of haunting, which we do not see in any Realist novel. In my essay, I am going to study this theme by referring to the various modernist works such as Rebecca, A Haunted House and The Painted Veil. The theme of haunting with its distinctiveness is widely associated with Modernism and it is highly studied in the novels of the Modernist type. Since the Modernist

Musical Theatre: The Process of Putting Together, and Being in a Musical

1668 words - 7 pages Musical TheatreThe Process of Putting Together, and Being in a Musical Research: Music Song Writing There are many different ways for writing a song. Often this varies depending on the type of song the writer is composing. Sometimes the lyrics will be written first then a vocal melody written to accompany the lyrics. Often the chorus will be written before the verses so the general mood of the song can be established and repeated

Putting on a Happy Face in We Wear the Mask by Paul Lawrence Dunbar

833 words - 4 pages Most would agree that putting a smile on the face will almost allow a feeling of joy to start from within. Furthermore, what is known is that every coin has two sides and within that dark side, the smile has many different facets. The thought and discipline in civil resistance on others that look upon some as inferior is a sign of a goodly man. In “We Wear the Mask” by Paul Laurence Dunbar one facet it shows is his oppression in the world and

Art Modernism Essay. A structured essay on how Modernist Painters looked at the world in a new way

4802 words - 19 pages helps better to represent the modernist nature of this painting, as it concerns itself with world events and rejects them as cruel, needless and disturbing, the attack on Guernica sparked Picasso's interest in creating this. The Spanish people are represented in the dead bodies and severed limbs. War has occurred. The disturbing tragedy of this occurrence is represented in this painting. Finally of the Post Modern Frame, Guernica is unique to the

Notes on Two Modernist Movements and 2 Artists in Each Movement and 8 paintings Evaluated using the Frames

5769 words - 23 pages . In their anthology of 1911, the Blue Rider Almanac, they included articles and essays on contemporary visual arts as well as music, theater, low arts, and ancient and non-Western cultures that embraced a wide range of conceptions about the place of art and the spiritual in the modern world.Wassily Kandinsky:Wassily Kandinsky was the founder of the Blue Rider group. His affection for color led him to blend forms into abstract compositions. He used

Theology in the Modern World

1362 words - 6 pages Ziauddin Sardar's Desperately Seeking Paradise is a progressive interpretation of Islam in the modern world, a world that is more globalized and is largely influenced by western culture. Sardar views modern Islam is an integration of the past that is largely derived from its golden Abbasid period and is desperately trying to retain its medieval origin, this inherent conservative tendency within Islam is largely fueled by the Wahabi's whom Sardar

Similar Essays

Putting The Human In Humility Essay

2145 words - 9 pages can be considered cleverer than me, which is why I never brag. There was a time when every time I receive a good grade I would rub it in my brothers’ face, until I saw how awful this made him and myself feel. According to Aiden P. Gregg and Nikhila Mahadevan, in Intellectual Arrogance and Intellectual Humility: An Evolutionary- Epistemological Account, the authors said, “…their intellectual integrity is compromised, in virtue of the fact that

A Light In The Darkness: Modernist Writing

1441 words - 6 pages images of perfection in the imaginary realties of the literary past and create a clean slate filled with the reality of the modernist period. The Modernist authors will always be remembered for their exploration of language and form, and for their dedication to keeping us in a well lit place, in an otherwise deceiving reality.

Putting The Affirmative In Affirmative Action

1794 words - 8 pages unnoticed. Richard Sander and Stuart Taylor, authors of Mismatch: How Affirmative Action Hurts Students It’s Intended to Help, and Why Universities Won’t Admit It, use the hypothetical example of “the student who would flourish at, say, Wake Forest” to explain mismatch. They go on to say that “[he] instead finds himself at Duke, where the professors are not teaching at a pace designed for him.” This leads to lower grades, a drop in self-esteem and

The Modernist Movement In The History Of British Literature

1781 words - 8 pages funeral pier of its dead “God,” committing suicide in order to escape the cruel, harsh world into which it was “born.”              In closing, Modernism allowed writers to think outside the box, exposing the state of the world by creating characters whose respective suicides implied exponentially more about the human condition than just the taking of their lives.  Authors who fell into the schema of Modernist thought explored the non-traditional