preview

Postmodernism And The Future Of Literature

Good Essays
Postmodernism and the Future of Literature
During the 19th and early 20th, Western world experienced numerous historical events and influential changes, including the Word Wars and technological revolutions. These phenomenons affected the society at large, including in the aspect of art and literature. Literary historians often classified literature from late 19th century until the end of World War II as modernism and literature after World War II as postmodernism. Although there are no explicit definitions, common traits can often be found that distinguished these two categories. In this paper, I will be examining modernism and postmodernism literature, as well as whether postmodernism still continue until now, focusing on Italo Calvino’s
…show more content…
Postmodernism artists enjoyed experimenting on literary techniques, such as metanarrative and lack of character developments, which received mixed response in literature world.
One of the most notable works in postmodernism era is Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night A Traveler. Just like many postmodern works, If On A Winter’s Night A Traveler is a metafiction, using second person narrative form to further emphasis its self-consciousness. Calvino indicated his intention by starting his book with the sentence “You are about to begin reading Italo Calvino’s If On A Winter’s Night Traveler” (1), addressing the main character of the book as “You” or “the Reader”. In addition, the book is high fragmented, another trait commonly found in postmodernism works. The book is divided into 22 parts, each in the form of double chapters, alternating between numbered chapters telling story of the character “You”, and unnumbered chapters containing the first chapter of 10 separate stories. With the concept of beginning a whole new story on each unnumbered chapters, Calvino was able to explore a wide range of genres, spanning from mystery to romance, in a single book. The discontinuity of the chapters result in absence of clear image of characters in each stories. Even the main story from the numbered chapters, Calvino used the advantage of having “You” as the main
Get Access