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Post Modernism (1965-present):
1. responses to modernism, especially refusals of some of its totalizing premises and effects, and of its implicit or explicit distinction between 'high' culture and commonly lived life 2. responses to such things as a world lived under nuclear threat and threat to the geosphere, to a world of faster communication, mass mediated reality, greater diversity of cultures and mores and a consequent pluralism 3. acknowledgments of and in some senses struggles against a world in which, under a spreading technological capitalism, all things are are commodified and fetishized (made the object of desire), and in which genuine experience has been replaced by simulation and spectacle 4. reconceptualizations of society, history and the self as cultural constructs, hence as rhetorical constructs 5. American and British writers of the 1960s and 1970s "metafiction" (Kurt Vonnegut, John Barth, Thomas Pynchon, John Fowles, and Angela Carter), produced texts that simultaneously questioned and violated the conventions of traditional narrative. 6. The emergence and proliferation of feminist, multiethnic, multicultural, and postcolonial literature since the 1970s is the most dramatic and significant manifestation of the de-centering and de-marginalization defining both postmodernity and postmodernism 7. Postmodern literature arose after World War II as a series of reactions against the perceived norms of modernist literature. 8. Postmodern writers include: Kurt Vonnegut, Joseph Heller, David Foster Wallace 9. a time marked by the cold war and the excesses of consumption. 10. It differs from Modernism by blurring the conventional boundary between "high" and "low" culture, by a completely loosened structure in both time and space, and by multiple openings rather than a closure 11. It rejects to conform to popular taste and combines heterogeneous elements, making it cater to a more sophisticated readership. 12. Genocide that occurred during the Second World War, mass destruction caused by atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, insecurity of Cold War Era, post colonialism issue, as well as the supremacy of multinational corporations and post-industrialism with new technologies, violence, counter culture and consumer culture shaped the perception of postmodern authors 13. Postmodernist writers often point to early novels and story collections as inspiration for their experiments with narrative and structure 14. postmodernism peaked in the 60s and 70s with the publication of Catch-22 in 1961, Lost in the Funhouse in 1968, Slaughterhouse-Five in 1969, Gravity's Rainbow in 1973, and many others 15. the beginning of post modernism is marked by moments in critical theory: Jacques Derrida's "Structure, Sign, and Play" lecture in 1966 or as late as Ihab Hassan's usage in The Dismemberment of Orpheus in 1971.

* Self reflexivity: this involves the seemingly paradoxical combination of self-consciousness and some sort of historical grounding * Irony: Post modernism uses irony as a primary mode of expression, but it also abuses, installs, and subverts conventions and usually negotiates contradictions through irony * Boundaries: Post modernism challenges the boundaries between genres, art forms, theory and art, high art and the mass media * Constructs: Post modernism is actively involved in examining the constructs society creates * Paranoia: The sense of paranoia, the belief that there's an ordering system behind the chaos of the world is another recurring postmodern theme. For the postmodernist, no ordering system exists, so a search for order is fruitless and absurd. Realism/Naturalism

1. The Midwest, where so many realist works are set (especially those of the "local color" variety), is becoming increasingly tied to the rest of the nation in the late 1800s (by the booming new railroad system, most notably). Late-19th century Americans have a deep and...
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