ERIC Number: ED186913
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Faulkner, Fitzgerald, and Pynchon: An Archetypal Approach to Modernism and Postmodernism in the Secondary School Curriculum.
Holsberry, Carmen W.
This paper suggests that teachers and curriculum planners should offer an overview of American fiction that presents the recurrent archetypes of American fiction and yet also deals with the unique aspects of individual works of fiction. The major pattern of experience in American fiction is explained as the transaction of the innocent self with the somewhat unyielding new world. Examples are given of this conflict of innocence with the world throughout American literature. Several protagonists in American literature are noted who innocently plant themselves against the world, insisting that life must have a meaning as they begin their existential quest for a new life, yet who encountered the intractability of a world that does not come round to them. Examples of such protagonists include Fitzgerald's Nick Carraway in "The Great Gatsby," Faulkner's Isaac McCaslin in "The Bear," and Pynchon's Oedipa Maas in "Lot 49." Emphasis is placed on examples from literature that differentiate between modernism, as found in Faulkner and Fitzgerald, and post modernism, exemplified by Pynchon, in order to show that despite the differences in form in twentieth century American Literature that students must be made aware of, there are also patterns in the American experience that are of recurrent, urgent, and ultimate concern for the American artist. (MKM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the combined Annual Meeting of the Secondary School English Conference and the Conference on English Education (Omaha, NE, March 27-29, 1980).