Realism & Modernism - REALISM & MODERNISM Mirror...

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Unformatted text preview: REALISM & MODERNISM Mirror Common man as hero Loss of meaning Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) 1. He witnessed pain and suffering b/c dad was a doc in a poor hosp. 2. Father owned slaves, was killed by one of them in an argument. 3. Frail mom dies when he is 16. 4. Trained in engineering 5. After a radical group, Tsar Nicolas I circles them then almost has them killed! 6. Sent to Siberia for 10 yrs. 5 years hard labor, 5 military. Purpose of his writing was to justify himself. Struggles to be recognized as a human subject. 1st psychological writer. Scanned papers for titles for his stories. The Gambler--written to pay his own gambling debts The Idiot--man looking to do good in world The Possessed--revolutionary Russia. Epileptic like himself. The Brothers Karamazov--made him the greatest writer of Russia MODERNISM (1900-1944) 2 POINTS TO REMEMBER 1. There's an implicit cultural project for the artist in modernism--to create through art a kind of sacred meaning that has been lost. 2. For the modernist, the realist project of holding a mirror up to nature is insufficient. Art must take into account human unconscious realms. It must take into account all the distortions that human subjectivity brings to perception and awareness. as opposed to... as opposed to... as opposed to... Below the surface Meaning in art Stream of consciousness Influential thinkers from 19th into the 20th century: Marx--economic forces as shapers of history Darwin--his theory gives a different view of man's centrality. Nietzsche--critique of the meek following of leaders out for their own good. Freud--inner life of the human is rich and complex. Franz Kafta (1883-1924) 1. Jewish, living in Czech in a non-Jewish place. Non-practicing Jew. German speaking. 2. Overbearing, business-man father. 3. Worked in insurance. 4. Dies of TB 5. Asked to please "destroy my work" Alienation--he wrote about what he knew. The Metamorphosis Hates his job, but does everything he can to keep it. Father went to a metamorphosis too, as did the whole family in the end Social transformation What is the underlying issue behind this story? What are the conditions of modern life that imposes alienation? Work, family (patriarchy), and servility, meekness. 3 questions of the root of Gregor's alienation: 1. What is the closest thing to God in the story? 2. By what is the order of life determined? 3. Then, family life? Jorge Luis Borges 1. Childhood in Argentina 2. Bilingual as a kid (English and Spanish) 3. Family trapped in England during WWI 4. Time in Spain after the war 5. Returns with Ultraism to Argentina 6. Became a librarian, then National Librarian, then a blind librarian! Best known for his creations, where "reality" is a thing in question. Absence of love/women in his work (romance) "Garden of the Forking Paths" 3 ELEMENTS OF THE STORY 1. Frequent fascination with labyrinth. Concerned with book and how it could also be the labyrinth 2. Wonderful metaphysical awareness of self and time and space. 3. Meditation on the way ...
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This note was uploaded on 04/27/2009 for the course UNKNOWN e316k taught by Professor Doherty during the Spring '09 term at University of Texas-Tyler.

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