The Rise Of Postmodernism

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The 20th century literary scene of England saw the appearance of a new movement that reflected the transition to modern culture, whose change can be attributed to new discoveries of science and technology. This movement is called Modernism and it is a side effect of the cultural and economic adjustment to the transformation of Western society. Specific theories and premises that emerged during that time stimulated people’s mind and imagination, promting them to abandon old convetions and create something new. The main focus of Modernist literature is on metaphysics, which is caused by a sense of dread towards a cultural crisis.
Postmodernism is a reaction to Modernism and it rejects and challenges almost every notion established by Modernism,
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But the existence of a novel that has been written almost two centuries prior undermines this assumption.
In 1759 an Anglican priest by the name of Laurence Sterne wrote a 9 volume novel titled: The life and opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman. A novel that brought as much delight as it did confusion to the readers and critics of the age. With its unique and experimental approach to the narrative the novel has the structure and form of a typical postmodern work. Even today critics are arguing about whether to consider Tristram shandy a postmodern novel since the Postmodern movement happened almost two centuries after the novel was written.
To determine whether Tristram Shandy is a postmodern work it is necessary to establish what makes a piece of literature postmodern. But it is difficult to define a movement that prides itself on being free and not constrained by old rules and conventions. Bran Nicole echoes this sentiment by explaining how postmodernism “began to figure in academic disciplines besides literary criticism and architecture – such as social theory, cultural and media studies, visual arts, philosophy, and history. Such wide-ranging usage meant that the term became overloaded with meaning, chiefly because it was being used to describe characteristics of the social and political landscape as well as a whole
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In general, there is an interrupted sequence of events, character development and action which can at first glance look modern. Fragmentation purports, however, to depict a metaphysically unfounded, chaotic universe. It can occur in language, sentence structure or grammar. In Tristram Shandy, the author or more accurately the narrator digresses a lot goes of the point. Goes back and forth through times, forgets some chapters, later ads them out of sequence, leaves blank pages eats some motherfuking shit all this is evidence that TS does have one of the features of

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