Modernism(s).ppt - Characteristics of Modernism(s(1890-1960 or 1890-Now Consider Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon(1907 in comparison to other

Modernism(s).ppt - Characteristics of Modernism(s(1890-1960...

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Characteristics of Modernism(s) (1890-1960 or 1890-Now)
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Consider Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon (1907) in comparison to other portraits/paintings we’ve seen so far this semester: Early Modern: Hans Holbein’s The Ambassadors (1533)
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Enlightenment: Thomas Gainsborough’s Blue Boy (1777) and Mr. and Mrs. Andrews (1748-9)
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Victorian: Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s A Vision of Fiammetta (1878)
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Modernism(s) “As far as literature is concerned modernism reveals a breaking away from established rules, traditions and conventions, fresh ways of looking at man’s position and function in the universe and many experiments in form and style. It is particularly concerned with language and how to use it (representationally or otherwise) and with writing itself” ( Dictionary of Literary Terms & Literary Theory ). Consider the following passage from Wide Sargasso Sea as an example of an experimental break with established rules of narrative description in a novel or novella: “”Then I open the door and walk into their world. It is, as I always knew, made of cardboard. I have have seen it before somewhere, this cardboard world where everything is colored brown or dark red or yellow that has no light in it. As I walk along the passages I wish I could see what is behind the cardboard. They tell me I am in England but I don’t believe them. We lost our way to England. When? Where? ” (Rhys 107).
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Compare the first person description from Wide Sargasso Sea with the following description of England by the narrator in A Christmas Carol : “The house-fronts looked black enough, and the windows blacker, contrasting with the smooth white sheet of snow upon the roofs, and with the dirtier snow upon the ground which last deposit had been plowed up in deep furrows by the heavy wheels of carts and wagons, furrows that crossed and recrossed each other hundreds of times where the great streets branched off, and made intricate channels, hard to trace, in the thick yellow mud and icy water” (Dickens 82). Please note: Modernists are not the first group of thinkers and artists to consider themselves modern. The Renaissance and the dawn of secular humanism, the Enlightenment tradition of rational liberalism, and even the Victorian’s faith in technological progress all qualify as modern.
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