Where is the Modernism? The role of early twentieth-century modernism in post-postmodernism, specifically contemporary British literature
This thesis focuses on the resurgence of what is quite broadly received as an engagement with early 20th century Anglophone literary modernist modes of writing in contemporary British fiction. This phenomenon has been placed in the broader context of the supposed end of postmodernism as the dominant cultural mode and the question of what follows on postmodernism (‘post-postmodernism’). An important contribution to the post-postmodernist debate has taken the form of ‘metamodernism’ as proposed by by Tim Vermeulen and Robin van den Akker in their short paper “Notes on Metamodernism”. However, their assessment of post-postmodernism downplays the importance of modernism as a specific phenomenon of the early 20th century, instead generalizing it to a sort of ‘pre-postmodernism’, apart from which they do not engage with literature. To counter this tendency, I aim to investigate the role and significance of early 20th century modernism in contemporary British literature.
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