Symbolism, Aestheticism and Charles Baudelaire

Known as the founder of French symbolism (though not himself part of the movement), and often associated with the artistic decadence and aestheticism of the later nineteenth century, Baudelaire was born in Paris where he lived a bohemian life, adopting the artistic posture of a dandy, devoted to beauty and disdainfully aloof from the vulgar… Read More Symbolism, Aestheticism and Charles Baudelaire

Postmodern British Poetry

If the era of ‘postmodernity’ is increasingly seen as ‘a socio-economic mode that has intensified and surpassed modernity itself’ then poetry produced under this new ‘socio-economic mode’ might rightly be dismissed as another form of ‘postmodern’ candyfloss neatly packaged for our quick or therapeutic consumption.1 On the other hand perhaps poets, often relatively uninvested in… Read More Postmodern British Poetry

The Waste Land as a Modernist Text

TS Eliot‘s The Waste Land, which has come to be identified as the representative poem of the Modernist canon, indicates the pervasive sense of disillusionment about the current state of affairs in the modern society, especially post World War Europe, manifesting itself symbolically through the Holy. Grail legend and the fertility legends discussed in JG… Read More The Waste Land as a Modernist Text

Modernism: On or About December 1910 Human Nature Changed

“On or about December 1910 human nature changed.” – Virginia Woolf wrote in her essay Mr Bennett and Mrs. Brown in 1924. “All human relations shifted,” Woolf continued, “and when human relations change there is at the same time a change in religion, conduct, politics, and literature.” This intentionally provocative statement was hyperbolic in its pinpointing… Read More Modernism: On or About December 1910 Human Nature Changed

New Criticism’s Relation to Modernism

New Criticism and Modernism emerged out of a world that was perceived as fragmented, with the Enlightenment ideals of rationality, progress and justice discredited; the artist alienated from the social and political world, and art and literature marginalised. The vast devastation, psychologIcal demoralisation and economic depression consequent to the war intensified rejection of.the bourgeoisie modes… Read More New Criticism’s Relation to Modernism