The age of anxiety
A sort of continuity with Edwardian age, but there are some differences. The system of the Victorian values comes to an end, crumbles dramatically under the impact of some blows
WWI- a million British soldiers died--> impact: emptiness, anger, direness became the subject matter of poetry--> war poets
Dissolution of the empire into the Commonwealth
Freud- "The interpretations of dreams" 1900
New investigation of the unconscious, the power of the mind. This challenges the Victorian features of duty/ behavior. This will have an impact in novel writing, now the focus is on the mind, not just on the soul.(es. Virginia Woolf, Joyce)
William James- "Principles of Psychology"
Idea of consciousness, the idea that it flows--> the stream of consciousness
Free association of ideas and the flacks of thoughts.
He makes differences of different ideas of time:
• External - historical, chronological development of events.
• Internal - psychological, measured by the emotional intensity of a moment, the time of the mind.
Einstein - theory of relativity
-powerful international movement (not just in London, also overseas)
Definition--> spirit of revolt, innovation, experimentation in all artistic fields, a radical remaking of all arts that went on in America and in Europe in the years following 1914.
Innovation- idea of new
Tradition- it's risky, why? Many artists started to want to break it. The writers liked it because it was controversial.
Eliot believed that tradition and innovations are connected, interlined.
Cosmopolitan- spread out, up to America.
Modern Poetry (chart on the book)
Importance of musicality of words.
• Free Verse
Rejection of the conventional patterns of traditional poetry
• No more traditional Meter (blend of the verse)
• No rhymes, compensated with alliterations, assonance and the musicality of words
• Flexibility in the length of the line
"No poet, no artist of all arts, has his complete meaning alone" Elliot's Idea of tradition
"Tradition is not a load we drag alone with us", you have to labour.
Before: Victorian novel (18th/19th century)
- chronological development of events
- Social world focus
- Little psychological analysis
Shift: transformation of British society, war cancels all the certainties. New social and psychological investigations.
From Society to man' sinner world: attempt to rediscover the unique experience of the individual by exploring their inner world, their consciousness.
Main influences that contributed to the development of modern novel: Bergson + Freud
No omniscient narrator--> it's multiple
The point of view shifted to the internal one
New technique: interior monologues. It is used to depict the stream of consciousness.
Direct interior monologue:
- the most revolutionary one, because it was taken to extreme by Joyce.
- flow of thoughts is free
- Narration takes place in the mind of the character
- How? Breaking down the syntax
Indirect interior monologue
- anonymous/third person narrator (free indirect speech) that filters the character's thought