By Douwe W. Fokkema †
In those lectures, brought at Harvard college in March 1983, the diversities among Modernism and Postmodernism are mentioned in semiotic phrases, in accordance with a contrastive research of semantic and syntactical (compositional) beneficial properties. They current the foremost result of study into the literary conventions of Modernism (Gide, Larbaud, V. Woolf, du Perron, Th. Mann) and the recommendations of Postmodernism (Borges, Fuentes, Barthelme, Calvino, Hermans). The research of innovation in literary historical past is predicated on an idea of literary evolution, introduced through the Russian Formalists and elaborated by way of reception conception and semioticians similar to Lotman and Eco. the writer argues for additional corroboration via empirical – textual in addition to mental – learn
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Additional info for Literary History, Modernism, and Postmodernism : (The Harvard University Erasmus Lectures, Spring 1983)
Héverlé, the Marxist and man of action, confesses to living without memories. Ducroo's position is exactly the opposite. Ducroo uses his memories to resist the schematization of the future. Héverlé urges him to join a political party, but Ducroo hesitates and faces the dilemma in terms of the qualifications of an active consciousness on the one hand and the schematization of a promised fu- MODERNIST HYPOTHESES 31 ture on the other: "At this moment nothing seems to me to be so poor a solution as to devote oneself to a part of humanity, called a party, which wants to occupy a particular position.
A programme of Postmodernism could read as follows: "We may not advance any kind of theory. There must not be anything hypothetical in our considerations. We must do away with all explanation, and description alone must take its place. And this description gets its light, that is to say its purpose, from the philosophical problems. " 81 The quotation is from an unexpected source, Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations, from the part that was completed in 1945. Of course, Wittgenstein was not a theorist of Postmodernism, but provides — now from a philosophical angle — an additional argument as to why the Modernist search for hypotheses and explanatory devices, however much of a provisional and corrigible nature, had to be abandoned.
This irritated Du Perron to such an extent that in a letter from Paris — where he lived — he charged his friend Ter Braak to discuss the matter with Vestdijk. "53 The new novel by Vestdijk to which Ter Braak referred must have been Terug tot Ina Damman (Back to Ina Damman), which, like Larbaud's Fermina Márquez, describes the life of schoolchildren and their first sensations of love. O. Barnabooth, Ses Oeuvres complètes, c'est-à-dire un Conte, ses Poésies et son Journal intime. Eddy du Perron, the son of wealthy parents who had returned to Europe from the Dutch East Indies shortly after World War I, recognized much of himself in the Latin-American multimillionaire Archibald Olson Barnabooth, who — economically independent thanks to an annual income of 10 million pounds sterling interest — travels through Europe in pursuit of intellectual experiments and freedom.