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Unseen Prose: Typicality Timeline

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M Chiswell

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16 Questions

What was a common theme in literature from 1945-1959?

Post-war trauma and existential angst - Reflecting on the immense loss and devastation caused by World War II, literature during this period often explored themes of trauma, disillusionment, and the existential search for meaning in a world that had witnessed unprecedented horrors.

Which technological development influenced literature during 1945-1959?

The rise of television - As television became a major source of entertainment and information, it influenced literary works by introducing new narrative forms and bringing visual storytelling to a wider audience, impacting how stories were told and consumed.

How did the end of World War II impact literature in this period?

Exploration of war trauma and loss - The end of WWII brought about a period of reflection in literature, with many works focusing on the psychological scars left by the war, the moral questions it raised, and the impact of the conflict on individual and collective identities.

What significant political event influenced literature in the 1960s?

The Cuban Missile Crisis - The Cuban Missile Crisis brought the world to the brink of nuclear war, which influenced literature by infusing it with themes of fear, political tension, and the fragility of human existence under the threat of global annihilation.

Literature from the 1960s often explored themes of:

Countercultural movements and social upheaval - The 1960s were marked by significant social change, with literature reflecting the era's rebellious spirit, challenging traditional norms, and advocating for civil rights, gender equality, and anti-war sentiments.

Which movement significantly influenced literature in the 1960s?

The Civil Rights Movement - The Civil Rights Movement, led by figures like Martin Luther King Jr., profoundly influenced literature by addressing issues of racial inequality, justice, and human rights, inspiring works that sought to expose and challenge systemic racism.

Which technology had a major impact on literature during 1970-1989?

Personal computers - The rise of personal computers revolutionised not only daily life but also literature, as writers began to explore themes related to technology, digital culture, and the implications of the emerging digital age on human identity and society.

What genre of music, influencing cultural narratives, emerged prominently in the 1970s-80s?

Punk - Punk music, with its raw, rebellious energy and critique of the status quo, influenced literature by inspiring works that embraced a DIY ethos, challenged societal norms, and explored themes of disenchantment and resistance.

What was a significant political scandal that influenced literature in this period?

The Watergate Scandal - The Watergate Scandal, which led to President Nixon's resignation, influenced literature by highlighting themes of political corruption, the loss of public trust in government, and the complexities of power and morality.

What technological advancement revolutionised communication in the 1990s?

The internet - The widespread adoption of the internet transformed communication, commerce, and information dissemination, leading literature to explore the implications of a hyper-connected world, digital identity, and the impact of technology on human relationships.

How did the end of the Cold War impact literature in the 1990s?

Emphasis on global political recalibration and new world orders - The end of the Cold War shifted global dynamics, prompting literature to explore themes of geopolitical change, the search for new identities in a unipolar world, and the aftermath of decades of ideological conflict.

Which major global event in 2001 deeply influenced literature?

The 9/11 attacks - The 9/11 attacks had a profound impact on global politics and culture, leading literature to address themes of terrorism, security, cultural clash, and the complex interplay between freedom and fear in a post-9/11 world.

What major global event began in 2019 and had a profound impact on literature?

The COVID-19 pandemic - The COVID-19 pandemic reshaped daily life and global interactions, influencing literature to explore themes of isolation, resilience, societal fragility, and the profound changes brought about by a global health crisis.

Which social movement focused on climate activism during this period?

Fridays for Future - Led by Greta Thunberg, Fridays for Future brought global attention to climate change, influencing literature to reflect on environmental issues, the urgency of sustainability, and the intergenerational struggle for ecological justice.

What significant political phenomenon saw a rise during the 2010s?

Populism - The rise of populism, characterised by leaders and movements challenging established political elites and institutions, influenced literature to explore themes of nationalism, identity politics, and the polarisation of societies.

How did the rise of social media influence literature in this period?

Reshaped public discourse and narrative styles - The ubiquity of social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok transformed how people communicate and share stories, leading literature to explore the dynamics of digital interaction, virtual identities, and the impact of social media on truth and authenticity.

Study Notes

Post-WWII Literature (1945-1959)

  • Common theme: reflection on the devastating effects of war and the search for meaning in a changed world
  • Technological development: development of television, influencing literary style and themes
  • Impact of WWII: led to a sense of disillusionment and a re-evaluation of values in literature

1960s Literature

  • Explored themes: social change, rebellion, and nonconformity
  • Influenced by: the Beat movement, emphasizing spontaneity and free expression
  • Significant political event: the Civil Rights Movement

1970-1989 Literature

  • Influenced by: the development of personal computers and the rise of punk rock music
  • Emergent genre: punk rock, reflecting dissatisfaction with mainstream culture
  • Significant political scandal: Watergate

1990s Literature

  • Revolutionized communication: the widespread adoption of the internet
  • Impact of the end of the Cold War: led to a shift in focus from international politics to personal and local concerns
  • Influenced by: globalization and multiculturalism

21st-Century Literature (2000s-2010s)

  • Major global event: the 9/11 attacks, profoundly influencing literature on terrorism and national identity
  • Significant global event: the COVID-19 pandemic, impacting literature on isolation and social distancing
  • Social movement: climate activism, inspiring eco-literature and environmental concern
  • Political phenomenon: the rise of populism, influencing literature on nationalism and identity politics
  • Influence of social media: led to the rise of online literature, blogging, and social media influencers

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