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Cultural and Literary Expression in Modernity

From Friedrich Nietzsche’s shocking pronouncement in the late 1800s that “God is dead” and that “we have killed him” to Vladimir Nabokov’s convention-challenging fiction, the Modern period—spanning roughly the end of the 19thcentury to the present—offered a range of provocative and often cynical cultural and literary productions. In this course, we will work to develop a more nuanced understanding of the scope of cultural and literary expression in the late 19thand the first half of the 20thc...

Topics: Architecture, General Art, Literature, General Music, Philosophy
Cost: Free

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Description

From Friedrich Nietzsche’s shocking pronouncement in the late 1800s that “God is dead” and that “we have killed him” to Vladimir Nabokov’s convention-challenging fiction, the Modern period—spanning roughly the end of the 19thcentury to the present—offered a range of provocative and often cynical cultural and literary productions. In this course, we will work to develop a more nuanced understanding of the scope of cultural and literary expression in the late 19thand the first half of the 20thcenturies and a working definition of what the vacuous-sounding term “modernism” might mean. We will attend to broad socio-historical happenings, from the birth of modernism in the late 19thcentury to the radical violence of the World Wars and the tragedy of the Holocaust and arrive at the post-modern moment, our post-colonial and technologically and economically globalized village. While offering this historical context, the course focuses on the cultural and literary movements from the “art for art’s sake” decadence of the late 1800s to the avant-garde experiments of the post-war period and beyond.In addition to literary “modernism,” the course will also take a brief look at the cultural production of “modernism” in art, music, architecture, cinema, philosophy, and drama.Yet, while the course will generally navigate late 19thand 20thcentury literature in the British tradition, framed by historical understanding and infused with an investigation of concomitant cultural production, we will end by briefly examining the increasingly global nature of postmodern culture, encountering the texts (and contexts) of Anglophone authors as diverse as India’s Arundhati Roy and Nigeria’s Chinua Achebe as well as taking a brief look at globalized, contemporary art and literature.Therefore, by the end of this course, we should have an advanced conceptualization of “modernism” and its many varied constructions, the major literary trends and cultural achievements of the late 19thand 20thcenturies, and the socio-historical movements that shaped them, as well as an attentiveness to the impact that globalization currently has upon literature and cultural production.

Details

  • Days of the Week: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
  • Level of Difficulty: All Levels
  • Size: One-on-One
  • Cost: Free
  • Institution: Saylor
  • Topics: Architecture, General Art, Literature, General Music, Philosophy

Provider Overview

About Saylor: The mission of the Saylor Foundation is to make education freely available to all. Guided by the belief that technology has the potential to circumvent barriers that prevent many individuals from participating in traditional schooling models, the Foundation is committed to developing and advancing inventive and effective ways of harnessing technology in order to drive the cost of education down to zero

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Saylor Offers Courses In: Music, Art, English Language Arts, Social Science

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