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Sample essay topic, essay writing: American Modernization - 602 words
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American Modernization Leading up to the turn of our present century, changes in culture and society of America triggered modernization throughout much of our commerce, social, artistic and educational lives. The past century or so has brought new obstacles and opportunities for the nation of America. This changing is reflected through some of the works by writers such as, Robert Frost, William Williams, Ezra Pound, and T.S. Eliot. Examining people's mindset in modernization one common feeling of people is "nervousness" which is due to the nation's reluctance to change.
T.S. Eliot is quoted with the statement 'the immense panorama of futility and anarchy which is contemporary history.'1 Modernism generally, varies greatly between previous times in the 19th century which breaks stride with the traditional lifestyle of the middle-class working public. Modernists portray a dull, gloomy and pessimistic picture of culture in America during this time period. This despair is often caused by an apparent boredom and the people's feeling of uncertainty, of changes to come. Modernism uncovered has an anti-traditionalist theme instilled in it, because of the inevitability that changes will occur. "Modern" itself possesses the qualities, such as being simple and spontaneous along with an indefinite time frame to allow people's acceptance of unknown
In many ways, this movement is difficult to define, but it can be generally applied to the work of writers who shared the belief that modernity and the reshaping of tradition were necessary conditions of their art. Much of the passion for a modernist change in art can be seen to arise from a need to compensate for new conditions in modern experience.William Williams was a modernist writer in the early 20th century who expressed his dim views on his present day society. Williams' poem "To Elise" is the poem that lashes out at American society describing how raunchy and distasting life really is. Williams clearly is unhappy with the present time and reflects back to an earlier time of tradition in these lines:"and young slatterns, bathed/ in filth/ from Monday to Saturday/ to be tricked out that night/ with gauds/ from imagination which have no/peasant traditions to give them/ character/but flutter and flaunt/sheer rags"(Elise 13-22).All of Williams' poems are dreary and depressing that shows no promising light at the end of the tunnel. Williams' poems highlight most of the changes going on in America at the time from underage working to automobiles. Sometimes he speaks of the changes in America directly and other times he mentions it in a passing verse. This is seen in the lines "sent out at fifteen to work in some hard-pressed house in the suburbs..no one to witness and adjust, no one to drive the car"(Elise 37-39 and 63-66).
You can here the distress and dissatisfaction in every word wrote by Williams. Another writer that excelled in the modernization period was Robert Frost. Frost wrote many poems and works during the modernization period in America that paralleled most of the other writer's in his time. Frost is another one of the writer's who tend to write in dismal, discouraging context. His works such as "Fire and Ice", "Nothing Gold Can Stay", and "Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening" all contain a daunting sense of destruction.
The first line of "Fire and Ice" is "Some say the world will end in fire" already talking of Armageddon which is a depressing topic for all. Frost doesn't really get into the changes of America during the modernization era, but still contributes a negative mentality for the writers of that time.
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