Modernists deal with issues and forms to reflect early 20th century insights into reality. (Structures i. e. a rejection of realism) * What issues and narrative strategies are adopted by modernists to represent these understandings? * Include one poem and one short story (Prufrock and Ms. brill) Through the deliberate adoption of specific forms and narrative strategies, modernists deal with the issues and practices widespread within the early 20th century.
These forms and narrative strategies highlight the strong internal problems experienced by individuals within a progressive modern society in an attempt to represent these understandings of alienation and isolation at the time. Modernism refers to modernist’s movement at the turn of the 19th century in response to the proceeding realist movement. Industrialization of the time in World War I and the development of various psychological and physiological theories at the turn of the century were some of the forces behind the modernist desires to make it new.
Modernism can be best understood as a move to better represent reality through human consciousness and writers created in their works, a loss of meaning and certainty after WWI. Modernism rejects realism. Realist writers assumed boldly their ability to accurately represent human experience through a focus on the external aspects of life. Modernists, however, saw this as a naive and conservative and they conveyed their disbelief in it as they challenged it. The poem, The Love Story of J. Alfred Prufrock by T. S.
Elliot and the short story Ms. Brill, clearly identify with these modernist concerns through particular textual practices that arose within the period such as stream of consciousness, epiphany, defamiliarisation, fragmentation and free indirect style. The narrative strategies adopted by Katherine Mansfield and T. S. Elliot represent modernist aims to express, through their literature, the psychological impact experienced from World War I, the breakdown of established meaning, and their reaction against romanticism. The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’ relays the thoughts of a frustrated middle-aged man who leads a dreary, uneventful, mediocre life as a result of his feelings of inadequacy and his fear of seizing opportunities, especially with women. ‘Prufrock’ was published during World War I, one of the most violent, cruel conflicts in modern times. Eliot’s poem reflects early 20th century insights into reality through stream-of-consciousness, which refers to refers to the flow of thoughts in the conscious mind.
The poem highlights, though this technique of ‘Prufrock’s free-flowing thoughts the well-dressed, upstanding citizens, especially women, who loved their material pleasures more than they loved other people. A “drama of literary anguish,” it presents this stream of consciousness in the form of a dramatic monologue. With its themes of weariness, regret, humiliation, longing, emasculation, sexual frustration, sense of decay, and awareness of mortality.
Throughout the poem, Elliot reflects the paralysis to Prufrocks mind as he endeavors with women with through the motif engaging and retreating. Modernist’s poets used Avant Garde methods to portray the complex ways in which the mind works psychologically. This resulted in characters such as Prufrock experiencing multiple personalities like Prufrock who is both the speaker and the listener in the poem. works of Katherine Mansfield’s Miss Brill, and T.
S. Eliot’s The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. Through the use of descriptive and sensory imagery, characterization, setting, style and point of view. In general, the modernists hoped to move away from the romantic literature and show through their own form of literature that life did not always have happy endings, and there weren’t just external conflicts, that is life did have its ups and downs as well as internal, psychological conflicts.