WGU C100 CH 9- Modernist Period

T.S. Eliot
The Hollow Men
T.S. Eliot
The Waste Land
T.S. Eliot
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
James Joyce
Ulysses, explores the theme of internalization in his groundbreaking stream-of-consciousness novel
James Joyce
Araby
Susan Glaspell
Trifles
William Faulkner
The Sound and the Fury
William Faulkner
Barn Burning
Ernest Hemmingway
A Farewell to Arms
Ernest Hemmingway
The Snows of Kilimanjaro
Nella Larsen
Quicksand
Willa Cather
My Antonia
Willa Cather
Pauls Case
F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby
Virginia Woolf
To the Lighthouse
Virginia Woolf
Mrs. Dalloway
John Steinbeck
The Grapes of Wrath
John Steinbeck
The Chrsyanthemums
Zora Neale Hurston
The Gilded Six-bits
Zora Neale Hurston
Their Eyes Were Watching God
Katherine Anne Porter
Flowering Judas
W.E.B. DuBois
The Souls of Black Folk
Ezra Pound
In a Station of the Metro
William Carlos Williams
The Red Wheelbarrow
Jean Toomer
Reapers
Hart Crane
The Bridge
Langston Hughes
The Weary Blues
H.D.
The Walls do not Fall
Which of the following is a group of Modernist playwrights?
Lorraine Hansberry, Arthur Miller, and Samuel Beckett are Modernist playwrights. The other options are authors, artists, and dancers.
Which of the following is a group of Modernist poets?
Marianne Moore, T. S. Eliot, e.e. cummings are Modernist poets. The other options are philosophers, musicians, and filmmakers.
Rallying, patriotic lyrics are most important for which of the following musical forms?
American war songs sought to rally the nation with their patriotic themes in times of war.
Who is considered the foremost visual artist of the Harlem Renaissance?
Aaron Douglas is considered the foremost visual artist of the Harlem Renaissance.
Which of the following art movements emphasized simplicity, functionality, and craftsmanship?
Bauhaus was a 20th century German art and architectural style known for its simplicity, functionality, and craftsmanship.
Which of the following philosophers believed that subconscious desires were revealed in dreams?
Sigmund Freud, the “Father of psychoanalysis,” believed that dreams revealed the true nature of one’s subconscious desires and fears.
Which of the following statements regarding Modernist poets is true?
Many Modernist poets avoided rhyme schemes or strict rhymes. Instead they embraced avant-garde and experimental structures.
Which of the following is considered a Communist propaganda film?
The Battleship Potemkin is considered a Communist propaganda film because it bolstered the Communist movement in the Soviet Union after the Bolsheviks’ 1917 overthrow of the czar.
Many Modernist styles of painting relied on abstraction. True or False?
True, Many Modernist styles of painting relied on abstraction. Abstract art departed from natural or realistic appearances.
As described by Herbert Read, Modernism represented _________________.
an abrupt break with all tradition, Herbert Read believed Modernism, in art and in literature, represented “an abrupt break with all tradition.”
Major Themes of Modernism
Modernism is a broad term that describes the artistic movements of the late 19th and 20th centuries, which challenged traditional representational art forms and experimented with new styles and forms. Major themes of Modernism include:

Fragmentation
Existentialism
Internalization/Externalizations
Individualism
Urbanization
Commercialism & Capitalism
War:

Fragmentation:
Modernists sought to represent a sense of shared and personal fragmentation. This sense of personal, or individual, fragmentation was a response to social fragmentation brought on by wars, economic depressions, and cultural divides along the lines of race and gender.

The feeling of being broken down into parts or pieces, as individuals and society alike sought to understand the rapidly changing world.

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Existentialism:
This philosophical movement maintains that existence is the only certainty. Individuals are free to define themselves through their choices and decisions, but the cost of freedom is accepting responsibility for the consequences. This philosophical viewpoint attracted many Modernists, as they sought to represent the fragmentation and chaos around them, while at the same time offering the importance of the individual as a catalyst for much-needed change and a pathway to hope.

The philosophy that emphasizes individual freedom to make choices, so long as they accept responsibility of the consequences.

Internalization/Externalization:
While internalization refers to the inner workings of the mind and psyche, externalization refers to the signs and symbols that appear on the outside, which are in turn indicators of the internal. Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis sought to bridge the internal and external.

The inner workings and cultivation of the inner, individual mind, as well as the outer signs and symbols that are indicators of the internal.

Individualism:
The overwhelming changes brought on by urbanization and the ethnic and cultural mixing pots that were modern cities drove people to search for ways to identify themselves. Communities emphasized their ethnicities, artists explored radical new patterns, musical variety exploded, and writers delved into the heads and psychologies of their characters. People sought to separate themselves from the increasingly large crowds of humanity

The viewpoint that celebrates that which separates one unique person from another; the emphasis on self-identity in an increasingly apathetic world.

Urbanization:
In just a few decades spanning the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the western world transitioned from rural to urban, and the city became the dominant feature of the developed world. With rapid urbanization came cultural, economic, and racial strife. Urbanization led to social and political organizing.

The growth of cities and the influence of cities, due to technological advances and people moving from rural areas to cities in order to be a part of the booming industries there.

Commercialism & Capitalism:
Commercialism, or an emphasis on profit, and the proliferation of capitalism after the Cold War impacted the creative world in the 1950s and 1960s. The art world was affected by the shift toward mass consumerism, and many Modernists pushed back on art-as-commodity. Art, music, literature, and theater was seen by many as potential commodities, as an object, sound, or performance that would bring in capital. Labeling a creative work as marketable or containing retail value was, therefore, problematic.

The emphasis on profit, the proliferation of mass consumerism, and the ingrained pressure to become successful with hard labor.

War:
Since Modernist artists were at work across two World Wars, European civil wars, and a Cold War, different periods reveal reactions to each phase of war in different and yet similar ways. The tie that binds these representations is an anti-establishment approach, wherein artists created their works in reactions to the horrors of war. Modernists felt that since it was a reliance on tradition and the status quo that led to such horror, a rejection of these would free the individual to heal the personal and social wounds.

The dramatic changes people were forced to undergo as a result of multiple global-scale wars in the 20th century.

Alienation
The collective and individual sense of forced isolation from tradition due to the world’s dramatic changes.
Existentialists believed ________.
Existentialists believed that individuals are free to define themselves through their choices and decisions as long as they accepted responsibility for those decisions.
Which of the following was NOT a contributing factor to the sense of fragmentation that influenced Modernist thought?
New religious factions were not contributors to the sense of fragmented identity that is characteristic of Modernism.
Which protagonist would most likely be found in Modernist literature?
the misunderstood, alienated loner, The literature of the early 20th century often focuses on the struggle of the individual to preserve his or her own identity and autonomy in an increasingly indifferent society. This struggle often brought about a sense of alienation from the status quo. For this reason, a misunderstood or alienated loner would be the most likely protagonist in a piece of Modernist literature.
Modernist Contexts
War, Political Change, and Capitalism
Social, Economic, and Political Fragmentation
War, Political Change, and Capitalism:
The horrors of war profoundly changed how nations, communities, and individuals saw their place in the world. Modernists began to look more closely at the role of the individual, in light of these political turns, highlighting the importance of internalization and inner life as an antidote to both communism and fascism. In the workplace, laborers fought for fairer pay and better working conditions, and many Modernists sought to represent this important and revolutionary agitation.
Social, Economic, and Political Fragmentation:
The economic despair caused by the crash of the U.S. stock market in 1929 and the Great Depression that communities across the board. Scientific advances, particularly Einstein’s relativity theories and theories of the infiniteness of the universe, created social and intellectual turmoil, as his theories were perceived as threatening science’s traditional role. Other key events include the passage of the 19th Amendment in the U.S., which gave women the right to vote. Racial tensions in the U.S. were expressed in everyday life through violence and through anti-miscegenation and anti-immigration laws. The turmoil brought about by these shifts in thought, political ideologies, and social demographics all formed both the catalyst and backdrop for Modernist works. Modernists therefore sought to embrace individualism as a way of negotiating the rapidly changing social landscape and as an antidote for the strife that occurred during this period.
The rise of new political ideologies and the social unrest they excited had a profound impact on Modernism. True or False?
True, Modernism was greatly influenced by the rise of totalitarian ideologies, such as communism and fascism, and the resulting social unrest.
Which of the following was an event that caused social and economic turmoil in the 20th century?
-The 19th amendment in the United States, which gave women the right to vote
-Anti-miscegenation and anti-immigration laws that caused violent racial tensions
-The crash of the U.S. stock market and the Great Depression
Modernist Philosophy
Modernist philosophers were primarily concerned with the drama of individual experience rather than attempting to make larger claims about the world. There were three prominent movements in Modernist philosophy: Existentialism, Psychoanalysis, and Pragmatism

Each philosophy attempts to try to find something within the world that can explain our experiences of living in the world.

Existentialism:
Human experience is fundamentally individualistic. Life is often absurd and lacks meaning. The individual’s unique experience is primary.

Posits that human experience is fundamentally individualistic because reality is subjective and life lacks meaning.
Included such key figures as French philosopher and playwright Jean-Paul Sartre.

Psychoanalysis:
The subconscious mind controls how we perceive and experience reality.

Developed primarily by German neurologist Sigmund Freud.
Emphasizes the subconscious mind, which controls how humans perceive and experience reality and is revealed in dreams, thereby joining the individual self’s inner and outer perspectives.

Pragmatism:
The truth of an idea lies in its visible, external results. Problems are not solved through individual isolation.

Posits that the truth of an idea lies in its visible, external results, and that common sense, rather than isolated introspection, can help make sense of the world.
Developed by such American philosophers as Charles Sanders Pierce, John Dewey, and William James.

The “true” existentialist or authentic person is, according to Sartre, the individual who accepts the burden of freedom and the consequences of his or her own decisions. True or False?
True, Jean-Paul Sartre believed that the authentic person is the individual who does not shift blame elsewhere (like religion or culture) for the consequences of his or her decisions but rather accepts those consequences as the burden of freedom.
Pragmatism rejected the existentialist focus on the individual. True or False?
False, Pragmatists emphasized the role of the individual in changing the world. It differed from existentialism in that it emphasized relationships between the individual and the external, everyday world rather than the individual in isolation.
Modernist Literature
Modernist literature departed from the strenuous external detail of Realist writing and the sensory-laden opulence of Romantic writing. Instead, Modernist literature was sometimes stark, sometimes rambling, sometimes disjointed, and sometimes minimalist. Modernist poets and writers provided new poetic and narrative forms that would best reflect a deep turn inward toward the individual. The tie that binds Modernist writers and poets is the deep turn inward and a desire to represent that turn and the causes behind it.
Ulysses by James Joyce:

Stream-of-consciousness Narration: Stream-of-consciousness narration represents the erratic “flow” of internal thoughts, which was important in representing Modernist themes.
First person point of view: This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s perspective (who is a character) and/or each character’s perspective. You can tell first person point of view narration when seeing a narrator or character use I, me, mine, my, we, our.
Third person omniscient point of view: This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s detached point of view and s/he knows everything about the characters and communicates that knowledge to the audience.
Objective point of view: This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s detached point of view but s/he does not reveal the characters’ internal thoughts or motives to the audience. This narrative strategy was also important in representing Modernist themes.
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This piece addresses the themes of internalization and externalization and illustrates a new perspective on reality that combines the internal and external workings of an individual. This reality more closely mirrors what Joyce saw in the world around him. Joyce uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner:
This piece addresses the themes of individualism and fragmentation and illustrates a character’s internal struggle for individualism amidst a chaotic, fragmented world. Faulkner uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view
To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf:
This piece addresses the themes of internalization and externalization and urges that reality is not concrete, tangible, logical, or linear. Woolf uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view.
Modernist Techniques:
Stream-of-consciousness Narration:
Stream-of-consciousness narration represents the erratic “flow” of internal thoughts, which was important in representing Modernist themes.
First person point of view:
This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s perspective (who is a character) and/or each character’s perspective. You can tell first person point of view narration when seeing a narrator or character use I, me, mine, my, we, our.
Third person omniscient point of view:
This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s detached point of view and s/he knows everything about the characters and communicates that knowledge to the audience.
Objective point of view:
This occurs when the story is told from the narrator’s detached point of view but s/he does not reveal the characters’ internal thoughts or motives to the audience. This narrative strategy was also important in representing Modernist themes.
James Joyce, “Ulysses”
Themes-Internalization and Externalization
Modernist Techniques-Joyce uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view

Explores the internal thoughts and external actions of seemingly mundane characters in Dublin, taking place over the course of a single day.

William Faulkner, “The Sound and the Fury”
Themes-Individualism and Fragmentation
Modernist Techniques-Faulkner uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view

Explores the difficulties of representing an individual’s reality by following four different perspectives of relatives in a family struggling with resentment, neglect, mental illness, and fractured family traditions.

Virginia Woolf, “To The Lighthouse”
Themes-Internalization and Externalization
Modernist Techniques-Woolf uses stream-of-consciousness and shifting points of view

Explores the idea of reality as something transient, opaque, shifting, and subjective while delving into the internalized thoughts about the nature of beauty, reality, and the complexity of adult relationships.

Stream-of-consciousness writing is a subject-oriented writing style in which the author discusses one particular topic. True or False?
False, Stream-of-consciousness writing is a style of writing that mimics how people think and emphasizes an internal thought process. Through stream-of-consciousness, writers can expose the inner thoughts of their characters.
When writing about the horrors of war, which of the following techniques did many Modernist writers use?
Many Modernist writers used jarring, fragmented narration to reflect the alienation and profound trauma experienced by both soldiers and civilians.
Modernist Poetry
Modernist poets addressed themes of alienation, crisis, and the search for meaning. Modernist poetry runs the gamut from intricate, emotional, and gritty depictions of war to minimalist celebrations of everyday objects. Modernist poets portray the search for self as a constant, often nihilistic, struggle. The quest for individualism is through thoughtful introspection, and Modernist poetry represents that quest.
“The Hollow Men” by T.S. Eliot:
This poem addresses the following themes: War, Death, Existentialism, Internalization. Eliot uses free verse.

Evokes imagery of soldiers haunted by war, meaningless death, and the nihilism of despair.

“in Just” by e. e. cummings:
This poem addresses the following themes: Innocence and the Ordinary. Cummings uses free verse with all lowercase letters and scattered spacing of words and lines.

Represents the beauty of the ordinary, the simple, and the natural in its innovative rhythmic style of scattered spacing and lack of capitalization.

“Poetry” by Marianne Moore:
This poem addresses the following themes: Truth and Fragmentation. Moore uses free verse with trails of thoughts separated or fragmented by shifts in stanzas.

Breaks proscribed poetic forms into trails of thoughts in order to showcase such forms’ failure to represent truth.

Modernist Techniques
Free verse: Poetry without any fixed pattern, meter, rhythm, or rhyme. Unconventional line and page spacing and capitalization allows the poet to play with the “flow” of the poem.”
Unlike Modernist writers, Modernist poets did not address themes of alienation, crisis, and the search for meaning. True or False?
False, Modernist writers and poets both addressed themes of alienation, crisis, and the search for meaning.
Which of the following themes is addressed in E.E. Cummings’ 1923 poem “in Just”?
Unlike T.S. Eliot’s poetry, “in Just” focuses on traditional themes, such as childhood, innocence, and the arrival of spring.
T.S. Eliot’s “The Hollow Men” uses which poetic form?
“The Hollow Men” uses free verse, meaning it does not follow poetic form and rhyme conventions. Using free verse in “The Hollow Men” signals that technological “advances” of war cannot be represented through traditional means.
The Harlem Renaissance
The ethnic and racial tensions that existed in the 20th century caused many minorities to examine the themes of fragmentation, individualism, and urbanization from their uniquely marginalized perspective. African Americans in particular came together as a community during the Harlem Renaissance, which referred to the flowering of African American cultural and intellectual life during the 1920s and 1930s, centered in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood. The Harlem Renaissance was a positive moment during the Modern Period because it encouraged new appreciation of and respect for African American experiences and culture. It is important to understand how the Harlem Renaissance is both a unique movement and a part of the larger Modern Period.

Called at the time the “New Negro Movement,”

Aaron Douglas
was a leading member of the Harlem Renaissance and an influential Modernist artist.
Louis Armstrong
was an inspirational, innovative jazz musician who influenced the art of jazz and changed the course of music. His unique style of trumpet playing and singing broke traditional playing styles and opened up new opportunities for improvisation and soloing in music.
Lorraine Hansberry
was a playwright, author, activist, and influential figure in the Harlem Renaissance. She was the first African American woman to write a play that was produced on Broadway.
The shortage of factory workers following the start of World War I played no role in the mass migration of African Americans to urban areas. True or False?
False, African Americans living in the south saw this shortage of factory workers as a chance to build a better life. Many chose to move to northern cities in search of new opportunities.
Artwork produced during the Harlem Renaissance only appealed to African Americans. True or False?
false, Artwork produced during the Harlem Renaissance appealed to diverse audiences.
“Harlem” is a distinctly Modernist poem because it engages the theme of isolation. True or False?
True, Harlem” reveals the deep frustration over social and political isolation felt by African Americans in the post-war period.
While Langston Hughes poem “Harlem” is a highly recognizable one, the poem is not representative of the Harlem Renaissance.
False, Hughes’ poem is not only one of the most recognizable poems, it is also distinctly representative of the Harlem Renaissance.
Modernist Theater
Modernist theater was grittier and darker than prior works produced for the stage. Moving away from the strictly realistic and easily accessible set designs and plots of the Realist Period, Modernist theater experimented with creating a space that could be alienating to the audience or that forced them to engage more actively with the drama by using their imagination to fill in the blanks.
Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
addresses Individualism, Internalization, and Capitalism. Miller uses flashback.
Explores the everyday struggle of defining reality by looking at the protagonist’s past as well as his present.
Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett a
addresses Absurdism and Existentialism. Beckett uses minimalism.

Questions reality and the meaning of life through the actions and dialogue of characters whose purpose remains unfulfilled by the end of the play

A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry.
addresses Individualism and Urbanization. Hansberry uses innovations and themes of the Harlem Renaissance.
Illustrates the realistic struggle of black Americans to gain respect, dignity, and success in a white-dominated culture
Modernist Techniques
Flashback
Minimalism
Flashback:
a theatrical storytelling method in which scenes that took place in the past are acted out instead of simply being alluded to in present-day dialogue
Minimalism:
the lack of setting or plot, which puts the focus on the dialogue and the acting abilities of the actors in order to carry the play
Theater-in-the-round plays were exclusively Modernist and have not survived beyond the 20th century. True or False?
False, heater-in-the-round was a style that was experimented with in the Modern Period, but many plays continue to use it to perform today.
Modernist drama differed from Realist drama in that Modernists sought to challenge or even alienate their audiences, not to entertain them. True or False?
True, Modernist plays were generally not written for entertainment value, but for a way to challenge the audience by thinking about certain themes. Many Modernist playwrights achieved this goal by making their audiences feel uncomfortable with the dialogue or action performed.
Which major theme of Modernism is a central theme in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman, as shown in Willy Loman’s struggle to define the reality of his past?
Internalization, Willy Loman’s struggle to define the reality of his past in the play Death of a Salesman echoes Freud’s “inner vs. outer” concept, in which he posits that a person is at conflict with the world and must define reality.
Which play is considered part of the Harlem Renaissance?
A Raisin in the Sun was the first play written by a black woman, Lorraine Hansberry, to be produced on Broadway. It is considered part of the Harlem Renaissance because it features an African American family struggling to attain the so-called “American dream”, but hindered by their race. Works of art that reflected the African American community at this time were part of the Harlem Renaissance’s exploration of the arts as a way to express the unique issues that the community faced.
Modernist Art
Modernist art broke free from established conventions in the arts, and painters, sculptors, and architects approached their art with a spirit of experimentation. The following are distinct art movements from the early and mid-20th century:

Cubism:
Expressionism:
Dadaism:
Fauvism:
Geometric Abstraction:
Surrealism:
Bauhaus:
Abstract Expressionism:
Minimalism
Pop Art:

Cubism:
Represented a subject from multiple angles, using simplified geometric forms.
Expressionism:
Emphasized subjective feelings above objective observations and focused on conveying emotions.
Dadaism:
An anti-establishment artistic movement that emerged in Europe in reaction to the horrors of World War I and emphasized the absurd.
Fauvism:
Emphasized spontaneous, bold reactions to nature and employed vibrant, wild colors.
Geometric Abstraction:
Stressed the two-dimensionality of painting, as observed subjects were converted into geometric shapes.
Surrealism:
Influenced by Freud’s focus on dreams, assembled realistic forms in fantastical contexts.
Bauhaus:
A German art and architectural style founded in 1919 by Walter Gropius known for its simplicity, functionalism, and craftsmanship.
Abstract Expressionism:
Emphasized spontaneous and dramatic personal expression in large abstract paintings.
Minimalism:
Emphasized a nonrepresentational style of sculpture and painting and extreme simplicity of form.
Pop Art:
Emphasized existing popular images and cultural artifacts, often mimicking mass-produced consumer products.
Pop Art reflected the emergence of consumerism and popular culture after World War II. True or False?
True, Pop Art reflected the emergence of consumerism and popular culture after World War II.
Female artists have been underrepresented in the historical art canon. True or False?
True, Female artists have been underrepresented in the historical art canon, primarily because of lack of opportunity.
One form of Abstract Expressionism involved paint being applied forcefully and aggressively to the surface of a canvas. True or False?
True, A form of Abstract Expressionism called action painting involves painters applying paint quickly and forcefully to the surface of a canvas to express feeling and emotion.
Aaron Douglas
The Crisis and Opportunity
Georgia O’Keeffe
Series 1, No. 8
Constantin Brâncu?i’s Bird in Space, 1923
Bird in Space, 1923
Barbara Hepworth’s Oval Sculpture (Delos)
Oval Sculpture (Delos)
Tony Smith’s Die, 1962
Die, 1962, minimalism
Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother
Migrant Mother moderist photography
Lange was hired by the Farm Security Administration with the task of drawing attention to the impact of the Great Depression in hopes of convincing the federal government to provide aid. True or False?
true, Lange was hired by the Farm Security Administration to photograph the devastating working and living conditions of the rural poor. Almost immediately after her photographs were published, the government agreed to provide aid.
This is the only photograph Lange took of Florence Owens Thompson. True or False?
False, Lange took several photographs of Florence Owens Thompson, but this one is by far the most well-known.
Modernist Filmmakers
The desire to create something “new” was imperative to Modernism, and because film itself was new, it was inherently modern. Filmmakers used this new medium to illustrate larger themes of the period, including internalization, individualism, capitalism, and war.
The Jazz Singer (1927)
was the first feature-length motion picture with synchronized sound. The offensive use of blackface in the film reveals a racist attitude prevalent at this time and illustrates the racial tension that occurred as a result of rapid urbanization.
The Battleship Potemkin (1925),
directed by Soviet filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein, is a propaganda film bolstered the communist movement in the Soviet Union after the Bolsheviks’ 1917 overthrow of the czar.
The Great Dictator (1940),
directed by and starring Charlie Chaplin, offered a satirical interpretation of the fascism and antisemitism of both Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini and openly criticized the actions of Nazi Germany.
The Wizard of Oz (1939),
produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), used bright colors and captivating storytelling to draw in audiences, and it demonstrated just how magical filmmaking could be.
Propaganda films are only funded or produced by governments. True or False?
False, Many filmmakers choose to create their own propaganda films, communicating their own messages or beliefs to mass audiences.
Many people see the film The Wizard of Oz as a warning that people who lack self-belief may ___________.
be easily manipulated by deceptive rulers, Many people believe the film is a warning about how power figures may manipulate those who do not have self-belief or a strong sense of identity.
Modernist Music
Modernist musicians experimented with harmony, melody, sound, and rhythm to create music that was wildly creative and innovative, breaking through musical and social barriers.
Modernist Techniques
-Dissonance: Occurs when two or more sounds collide rather than provide a traditional, harmonized melody.
-Improvisation: Occurs when variations on a musical theme are spontaneously created.
The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky (1913):
In this orchestral piece, Stravinsky used dissonance to produce a feeling of tension and anxiety and a sense of instability. Additionally, aggressive rhythms and heavy syncopation make the work seem rhythmically off-balance. These elements were shocking at the time and sent audiences into an uproar.
Jazz and Blues:
The major performers of this period included such notables as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and Bix Beiderbecke. Jazz and Blues grew out of the Prohibition era and continues to enthrall audiences and influence new musical genres even today.
Big Band:
This style of music originated in the 1910s with such artists as King Oliver, but became more of a cultural phenomenon during the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s. By the 1930s, the element of swing, a series of two-note couplets (or “duplets”) of unequal duration (long-short) became part of the Big Band sound.
Swing Dance:
Swing dance bands from the 1920s through the 1950s were an unusual collection of musicians based in the jazz tradition that catered to the spontaneous dancing of their live audiences. Their music was snappy, upbeat, loose, and always about having a good time.
American War Songs:
Songs that fall into this category served as rallying cries, boosting American morale and resolve during times of armed conflict. Among these would be “Free America,” a Revolutionary War song. Some war songs chronicled the anxiety of military personnel and their families resulting from separation. During World War II, a number of songs centered on the adjustment to military life by civilian draftees; among these are Irving Berlin’s “This Is the Army Mr. Jones” and the Andrews Sisters’ “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.”
Frank Sinatra:
An American singer who became famous during the Swing era and quickly became the idol of swooning teenage female fans. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, he recorded a number of popular standards, demonstrating his unique style and musical approach.
Dissonance represents a reaction against the romantic conception of melody. True or False?
True, Dissonance represents a reaction against the romantic conception of melody.
Some popular American songs during the Modern Period served as rallying cries, boosting American morale and resolve during times of armed conflict. True or False?
True, Some songs served as rallying cries, boosting American morale and resolve during times of armed conflict.
How did Stravinsky achieve the sense of Paganism in his work Rite of Spring?
Stravinsky employed many radical devices to underscore a Paganistic theme in Rite of Spring, including a heavily syncopated rhythm, and music and dance that was not formal but instead inspired by folkloric traditions.
Modernist music is characterized by its use of which of the following?
Modernist music is characterized by its use of dissonance and improvisation.
Cultural Exchange and Diversity in the Modern Period
Modernist works modeled a relationship of cultural exchange and diversity. This new model rejected the imperialist notions of Western cultural superiority and the assertion that only Western cultural expressions held value. Modernists works demonstrate that when the individual is placed at the center of creative expression, the diversity of human experience can be best represented.
Two of the most prominent Modernist artists
Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse—used their encounters with African art and sculpture in their works.
African culture was also spotlighted
also spotlighted in the literature of the Modern Period. In the novel Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe examines the influence of the West on Africa, particularly on the Igbo culture of Eastern Nigeria.
American poet Ezra Pound
demonstrated the power of cultural exchange in his writing. Pound was influenced by classical Chinese and Japanese poetry, such as the haiku, a three-line poem with only seventeen total syllables.
Cultural exchange in Modernist works rejected…
imperialism, Modernism began to redefine the relationship between Western and nonwestern cultures, shifting from an imperialist perspective to one of exchange and diversity.
How might Modernist thinkers react to the following quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson? “Truth is the property of no individual but is the treasure of all men.”
They would agree., Increased cultural exchange in the Modern Period posited that truth is a matter of negotiation of perspectives. The quote rejects the idea that there is one, real truth.
One of the major themes in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart is…
Achebe demonstrates that there are positive and negative consequences of cultural diversity; however, the changes are irrevocable.
Contemporary Influences
“Modern dance,” as we know it today, was first conceived in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Modern dance developed as a rejection of classical ballet’s proscribed body positioning, storylines, and economic class connotations.
Modern dance embraced “radical” new body positioning and costumes, conceptual themes, and a multicultural approach to companies, choreographers, and dancers.
Modern dance eventually evolved into contemporary dance, which blends Modern and balletic aesthetics and techniques.
Early Modern dance uses some of the techniques and aesthetics found in ballet. True or False?
False, Early Modern dance rejected classical ballet’s form, lines, costumes, and focus on storytelling.
One of the ways early Modern dance revolutionized concert dance was by using non-white dancers. True or False?
True, Both the Jose Limon and Alvin Ailey companies used and continue to use primarily non-white dancers and non-Eurocentric dance themes.
This Modernist style of art emphasized spontaneous personal expression in large abstract paintings.
Abstract Expressionism emphasized spontaneous personal expression in large abstract paintings.
Which one of the following themes was NOT typically addressed by Modernist poets?
Religious orthodoxy was not one of the themes typically addressed by Modernist poets.
Which of the following techniques was developed by Modernist fiction writers?
Stream-of-consciousness narration was a Modernist technique developed by Modernist fiction writers like James Joyce, William Faulkner, and Virginia Woolf. It strove to represent a character’s thoughts and feelings as they experience them, often neglecting grammatical correctness and coherent flow.
Pablo Picasso was the leading artist of ___________.
Picasso was the leading artist of Cubism.
Which Modernist style of art stressed the two-dimensionality of painting and converted subjects into geometric shapes?
Geometric Abstraction stressed the two-dimensionality of painting and converted subjects into geometric shapes.
Which Modernist style of art transformed ordinary subjects by placing them in distorted or fresh contexts based on dreams or the subconscious?
Surrealism transformed ordinary subjects by placing them in distorted or fresh contexts based on dreams or the subconscious.
Fauvist painters used all of the following techniques to communicate emotional expression EXCEPT __________.
Impasto, the technique of applying paint very thickly to the canvas, typically with a palette knife, was an Impressionist technique.
Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring (1913) is an example of which Modernist music movement?
Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring is an example of Primitivism.
Dadaism first emerged in ______ as a reaction to the horrors of ________.
Europe, World War I
Jean-Paul Sartre was a key proponent of which of the following Modernist philosophical movements?
Existentialism, Jean-Paul Sartre, a French philosopher and playwright, was a key proponent of existentialism, believing that humans are moral free agents who should be responsible for the consequences of our decisions.
Which of the following was the first play written by a black woman to be produced on Broadway?
A Raisin in the Sun was written by Lorraine Hansberry and was the first play written by a black woman to be produced on Broadway. As such, the play is an important part of the Harlem Renaissance.
All of the following artists are considered part of the swing dance movement EXCEPT ________.
The Andrews Sisters are generally not considered part of the swing movement, since they were known for their patriotic American war songs.
Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator is probably BEST known for its use of ________.
satire, Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator is a highly satirical film, portraying a satirical interpretation of anti-Semitic dictators like Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini.
In what way did Modern dance costumes differ from classical ballet costumes?
Classical ballerinas and danseurs had a strict dress code; Modern dancers embraced less restrictive materials and shapes.

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