Postcards from the Trenches: Negotiating the Space between Modernism and the First World War
The unprecedented magnitude of death during World War I forever altered how people perceived their world and how they represented those perceptions. In Postcards from the Trenches, Allyson Booth traces the complex relationship between British Great War culture and modernist writings. She shows that, through the experience of the Great War, both civilian and combatant modernist writers found that language could no longer represent experience. She goes on to identify and contextualize several of the resulting modernist tropes: she links the dissolving modernist self to soldiers' familiarity with corpses, the modernist mistrust of factuality to the apparent inaccessibility of facts regarding the "rape of Belgium," and the modernist interest in multiple viewpoints to the singularity of perspective with which generals studied battlefield maps. Though her emphasis is on literary works by Robert Graves, E.M. Forster, and Vera Brittain, among others, Booth's analysis extends to memorials, posters, and architecture of the Great War. This interdisciplinary quality of Booth's study results in a much deeper understanding of how the Great War affected cultural representations and how that culture represented the War.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
argue army articulated Banham battle battlefield Belgium Blunden body boundaries Britain Bruno Taut buildings buried casualties Cenotaph chapter civilians Clarissa coffin combatant constitutes corpselessness corpses cultural dead death described E. M. Forster Einstein Tower Eksteins Elaine Scarry enemy England experience expressionism expressionist expressionist architects fact factuality fiction figure Forster forward France front line Fussell German Germany’s glass Gropius Grosses Schauspielhaus Hynes images imaginative international style Jacob Jacob’s room Keegan landscape language Le Corbusier linear literary living look man’s maps material memorials metaphor military modernism modernist Modris Eksteins move narrative narrator novel objects one’s past Paul Fussell perceptual Pevsner physical plot poem postcard rape reality representation response Robert Graves Sassoon Scarry seems Septimus shape shell soldiers space story structure suggests synecdoche T]he tion trenches understood veterans Virginia Woolf visual Wallace Stevens war's Western Front window women words wounded writers