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Modernism - Essay Example

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From the following research it can be comprehended that modernism has impacted immensely on real life situations in our generation today. Women in the society are sidelined in developmental matters that affect them direct and indirect…
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Download file to see previous pages... The researcher states that modernism was a rebellion against realism. It is argued that modernism is the rejection of tradition and its inequities. In another dimension, modernism encompasses of actions of those that felt that the traditional forms of art, literature, social organization and real life were becoming obsolete and that they were not going in line with new social economic and political situations of an emerging industrialized world. The assertion by Henry James that ‘the whole of anything is never told’ could be both true and false. The novel is about dreams that do not come true. This can be argued to be intercession on wishes, hopes, success and failure on what life would do to a strong and imaginative woman of the nineteenth century who supposedly has almost everything and almost every person to presume that all her wishes and hopes would be realized. In other words, the whole story is about hopes and disappointments in life. In fact, the novel is an outline of the big cosmopolitan world of European culture and history which is composed of big ambitions, riches, class and above all, what such a life would do to people of such a culture. One thing that interested James is the idea of imagination as an instrument of thought. According to James, it is through the working of his characters’ imagination or lack of it that he was able to define their destinies. However, the meaning of imagination according to James is a very large subject which is evident by the way the word has been used and scattered all over his work. However, according to James, the definition of imagination could be narrowed to mean among other things, what turns observed experience into understanding (James and Luckhurst 2009). Given that James is a realist, imagination should be a product of other primary factors such as real knowledge and real experience which in the case of the novel, lacks from the woman character. Nonetheless, the imagination according to James is much more applicable in real life and should be intense and active normally accompanied by knowledge (Matthiessen and Kenneth, Murdock 1947). The woman character in the story is seen to lack knowledge and instead mistakes beauty for truth. Due to lack of knowledge, she fails to see the real picture of the man she falls in love with (James and Luckhurst 2009). Amazingly, the man she falls in love displays his disregard for money, something she takes as evidence that the man has no greed for money while in the real sense, the man’s disregard for money is actually nothing but greed. In fact, according to the woman character in the story, human wishes without knowledge acts as a barrier towards getting the real picture of the situation (James and Luckhurst 2009). The wishes act as a shadow as they make individuals create a picture of wishes towards other individuals and situations as a quench of justifying their wishes to be true. It is very real that even when wishes covers the truth in real life situations, especially when people ironically present the art of living in a different perspective, people are unable to discover the masking of such individuals even when something warns them. In the case of the woman in the story, the man she falls in love with presents himself with ironic elegant about the art of living though he has such a look of plentitude and fulfillment, something the woman is enchanted about though in her enchantment, something warns her but she goes unheeded (James and Luckhu ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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