Class Notes (835,937)
Canada (509,515)
ENGL 226 (19)
Lecture 10

Lecture 10- Modernist Poetry.docx

3 Pages
69 Views
Unlock Document

Department
English (Arts)
Course
ENGL 226
Professor
Kait Pinder
Semester
Summer

Description
Lecture 10: Modernist Poetry Modernism • desire for concrete images with no superfluous words • not passive reading; requires work and attention to detail • during the height of high modernism, students started asked professors to read contemporary poetry • hard to pin down with one comprehensive definition • has no definitive start or end date, because of the influence it has had on all 20thC literature ◦ some say 1848 with Baudelaire ◦ some say turn of the century with philosophical ideas of the late 19th and 20th C • a movement of movements • (Friedrich Nietzsche, Henri Bergson, Sigmund Freud) ◦ Freud pointed to the ways in which we don't know ourselves ▪ mysteries of the human psyche ◦ Nietzsche's death of God ▪ the transvaluation of all values ▪ the rigid concepts of good and evil need to be overturned and redefined ▪ it is oppressive to our world ▪ if God is still alive, good is still the ultimate thing ◦ Bergson ideas about the experience of time as qualitative and non- lingering ▪ instead of it being part of a progression, our experience of time is felt and experienced ▪ we carry with us and always incorporate the past into the present and future • difficulty: use of different languages, oblique imagery, allusions to "high" culture ◦ high art, as opposed to mass culture ▪ Mad Men versus One Life to Live ▪ have to be trained in and develop a taste for high art • written around WWI time ◦ T.S. Eliot was about to get PhD from Harvard, but the war forced him to stay in England, where he committed himself fully to poetry • form: free verse, fragmentation, imagism, impersonality ◦ free verse (think Whitman) ▪ one of the defining features of modernist poetry ▪ Eliot: "no verse is ever free" ◦ impersonality ▪ Eliot's idea that a poem can be about emotion, but it is not about the poet's feelings • poems of the mind: emphasis on thinking, philosophical problems, process • international movement, cosmopolitan nature ◦ located in Europe to begin with ◦ heavily influenced by the Euro literary tradition (i.e. the reference to Dante) ◦ Pound found he couldn't write poetry in America ▪ wanted to escape Walt Whitman-like work • emphasis on the "new" ◦ kind of radical responses to the modern world ◦ revolutionary poetry ◦ responding to a shattered world view: the world is changing, so poetry is changing too • modernism emphasizes process, rather than end ◦ relates to the overwhelming feeling at the beginning of the 20thC that certain values were in need of adjustment ◦ want reader to work at it, trains them Modernism as Critique • difficulty in positioning democracy as a modernist ideal ◦ they were fascist and anti-semitic (Pound and Eliot) ◦ they were writing a difficult poetry that brought in high culture references, only for an elite audience to understand ▪ bafflement for the untrained reader • wanted to both represent the modern world in a modern way and critique it • focus on antagonism and cr
More Less

Related notes for ENGL 226

Log In


OR

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


OR

By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.


Submit