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Originally a reaction to modernism, referring to the lack of artistic, ... responses to modernism and its ideas - responses to technological advances ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Postmodernism

  • Authors and Literature

What is Postmodernism?
  • Postmodernism is a term that encompasses a
    wide-range of developments in philosophy, film,
    architecture, art, literature, and culture.
  • Originally a reaction to modernism, referring to
    the lack of artistic, intellectual, or cultural
    thought or organized principle.
  • Started around 1940s, exact date is unknown.
  • Peaked around the 1960s and 1970s with the
    release of Catch 22 and Slaughterhouse Five

Postmodern Literature
  • What is it?
  • - Used to describe the different aspects of post
    WW2 literature (modernist literature).
  • - There is not a clear and defined definition of
    postmodernism because of the little agreement of
    the concepts and characteristics and ideas within

Postmodernist Literature
  • Postmodernist Literature contains a broad range
    of concepts and ideas that include
  • - responses to modernism and its ideas
  • - responses to technological advances
  • - greater diversity of cultures that leads to
    cultural pluralism. (small groups within a larger
    society maintain their culture identity).
  • - reconceptualizations of society and history

Postmodern Literature
  • There are a few similarities to modernist
  • Like modernist literature, both are usually told
    from an objective or omniscient point of view.
  • Both literatures explore the external reality to
    examine the inner states of consciousness of the
  • Both employ fragmentation in narrative and
    character construction

Postmodern Literature Common Themes
  • Irony, playfulness, black humor
  • - Example The Crying Lot of 49, Pynchon uses
    childish wordplay while discussing serious
    subjects. An example of his wordplay can be found
    in the names of his characters Mike Fallopian,
    Stanley Koteks, Mucho Maas, and Dr. Hilarius.

Postmodern Literature Common Themes
  • Patiche
  • - Authors often combine multiple elements in the
    postmodern genre.
  • Example Pynchon includes elements from science
    fiction, pop culture references, and detective
    fiction to create fictional cultures and concepts.

Postmodern Literature Common Themes
  • Metafiction
  • - Writing about writing, often used to undermine
    the authority of the author and to advance
    stories in unique ways.
  • Example In Italo Calvinos novel, If On a
    Winters Night a Traveler, is about a reader
    attempting to read a novel of the same name. In
    Kurt Vonneguts novel, Slaughterhouse Five, the
    first chapter is about the writing process of the

Postmodern Literature Common Themes
  • Paranoia
  • -The belief that there is something out of the
    ordinary, while everything remains the same.
  • Example In Kurt Vonneguts novel, Breakfast of
    Champions, a character becomes violent when he
    imagines everyone else as a robot and he is the
    only human.

Postmodern Literature Influential works
  • Catch 22 Joseph Heller
  • Slaughterhouse Five Kurt Vonnegut
  • Lost in the Funhouse John Barth
  • The Things They Carried Tim OBrien
  • White Noise Don DeLillo
  • Gravitys Rainbow Thomas Pynchon
  • The Crying of Lot 49 Thomas Pynchon

Postmodern Authors
  • Joseph Heller
  • Born May 1, 1923 in Brooklyn, New York
  • Known for his post World War satires and
  • Catch 22 most well-known of his works
  • Other works include Something Happened, Good as
    Gold, and Closing Time.
  • Also wrote plays We Bombed in New Haven, Catch
    22, Clevingers Trail

Postmodern Authors
  • Thomas Pynchon
  • Born May 8, 1937 in Glen Cove, New York.
  • Known for his fictional writing over many
    different subjects that include science,
    mathematics, and history
  • Known for his early works V, The Crying of Lot
    49, and Gravitys Rainbow.
  • Also wrote essays concerning diverse topics such
    as missile security and Watts Riots ( a large
    scale riot that lasted six days in the Watts
    neighborhood of LA).

Postmodern Authors
  • Kurt Vonnegut
  • Born November 11, 1922 in Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Known for using Patiche in his works. Blends
    satire, black comedy, and science fiction to
    create novels, such as Slaughterhouse Five and
    Breakfast of Champions.
  • As a former soldier and prisoner of war, many of
    his experiences influenced his later works.

Postmodern Authors
  • Tim OBrien
  • Born October 1, 1946 in Austin, Minnesota
  • - His career began with the release of If I Die
    in a Combat Zone, Box Me Up and Ship me. Wrote
    mainly about his experiences in the Vietnam War
  • OBrien uses fiction and reality and blends them
    into his own genre. He labels his works fiction,
    however, he uses his situations he experienced in
    his works.
  • Most famous work The Things They Carried

  • "Joseph Heller." Wikipedia, The Free
    Encyclopedia. 19 Mar 2008, 0542 UTC. Wikimedia
    Foundation, Inc. 24 Mar 2008 lthttp//en.wikipedia.
  • "Kurt Vonnegut." Wikipedia, The Free
    Encyclopedia. 21 Mar 2008, 1826 UTC. Wikimedia
    Foundation, Inc. 24 Mar 2008 lthttp//en.wikipedia.
  • "List of postmodern authors." Wikipedia, The Free
    Encyclopedia. 10 Mar 2008, 1237 UTC. Wikimedia
    Foundation, Inc. 24 Mar 2008 lthttp//en.wikipedia.
  • "Postmodern literature." Wikipedia, The Free
    Encyclopedia. 21 Mar 2008, 1646 UTC. Wikimedia
    Foundation, Inc. 24 Mar 2008 lthttp//en.wikipedia.
  • "Thomas Pynchon." Wikipedia, The Free
    Encyclopedia. 15 Mar 2008, 1423 UTC. Wikimedia
    Foundation, Inc. 24 Mar 2008 lthttp//en.wikipedia.