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By Lisi Schoenbach

Modernism has lengthy been understood as an intensive repudiation of the prior. studying opposed to the narrative of modernism-as-break, Pragmatic Modernism lines an alternate pressure of modernist inspiration that grows out of pragmatist philosophy and is characterised by way of its dedication to gradualism, continuity, and recontextualization. It rediscovers a particular reaction to the social, highbrow, and inventive differences of modernity within the paintings of Henry James, Marcel Proust, Gertrude Stein, Oliver Wendell Holmes, John Dewey, and William James. those thinkers proportion an institutionally-grounded method of swap which emphasizes behavior, continuities, and lifestyle over amazing occasions, heroic competition, and radical rupture. They built an energetic, dialectical perspective that was once serious of complacency whereas refusing to romanticize moments of concern or conflict.

Through its research of pragmatist key phrases, together with "habit," "institution," "prediction," and "bigness," Pragmatic Modernism bargains new readings of works by way of James, Proust, Stein, and Andre Breton, between others. It exhibits, for example, how Stein's attribute literary innovation--her repetitions--aesthetically materialize the matter of behavior; and the way institutions--businesses, museums, newspapers, the legislation, or even the kingdom itself--help to build the subtlest of private observations and personal gestures in James's novels.

This examine reconstructs an missed pressure of modernism. In so doing, it is helping to re-imagine the stark selection among political quietism and overall revolution that has been passed down as modernism's legacy.

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