By Peter Childs
Modernism : the hot severe Idiom 2d variation via Peter Childs. Routledge N. Y.,2008
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Extra info for Modernism 2nd Edition (The New Critical Idiom)
The ideology expressed by this stance has been hotly disputed by Marxist writers, and their debate is frequently contextualised in terms of the opposed stances of the Hungarian critic Georg Luka´cs and the German dramatist Bertolt Brecht, a dispute which was continued by Luka´cs and the German social philosopher Theodor Adorno after the Second World War. Luka´cs’s position is best outlined in his late essay ‘The Ideology of Modernism’ (1957), in which he argues that modernism involves a ‘negation of history’ by self-consciously pitting itself against the past and by rejecting modes of historical understanding (Luka´cs 1957).
Brecht 1975: 424–5) However, there are different views which take us beyond these polarised opinions and interpret modernist writing in other ways which are illuminating. Theodor Adorno, a major ﬁgure in the Frankfurt School of critical theorists, maintained that art and literature, and particularly modernist art, could function as a kind of negative or contradictory criticism of society, in thoughtprovoking experimental texts. Adorno argued that difﬁcult texts provoked new, unfamiliar, estranged conceptions of life – which is to say that the dissonances and fractures of modernist art expressed the individual’s loss of control, centredness and harmony in the contemporary world.
R. James made this claim long ago for Aime´ Ce´saire, who uses Eliot’s vision of a uniﬁed human time in ‘The Dry Salvages’ to found Negritude (James 1980: 402). Charles Pollard thus goes on to talk about the ‘New World Modernisms’ of the Caribbean in writers such as Wilson Harris and Kamau Brathwaite. Caribbean writers such as Harris and Ce´saire have openly adopted modernist linguistic strategies and formal approaches, and such realignment of modernist aesthetics has altered modernism’s relationship to history, colonialism and political systems.
Modernism 2nd Edition (The New Critical Idiom) by Peter Childs