THE TRACES OF POSTMODERNSM N THE LFE AND OPNONS OF TRSTRAM SHANDY GENTLEMAN BY LAURENCE STERNE.
WHO S LAURENCE STERNE?Laurence Sterne (24 November 1713 18 March 1768) was an Irish novelist and an Anglican clergyman. He is best known for his novels The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, and A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy; but he also published many sermons, wrote memoirs, and was involved in local politics. Sterne died in London after years of fighting consumption.
WHAT S THE BOOK ABOUT? Tristram Shandy is the main character of the book. Despite this fact, he was born towards the end of the book. He talks about the accidents about his presence and complains about the mistakes of his parents. But the story never goes directly. The other main characters of the book are : Walter Shandy His fatherToby Shandy His UncleMr. Snop DoctorSusanna The servant
The most striking formal and technical characteristics of Tristram Shandy are its unconventional time scheme and its self-declared digressive-progressive style. Sterne, through his fictional author-character Tristram, defiantly refuses to present events in their proper chronological order. Again and again in the course of the novel Tristram defends his authorial right to move backward and forward in time as he chooses. He also relies so heavily on digressions that plot elements recede into the background; the novel is full of long essayistic passages remarking on what has transpired or, often, on something else altogether.
POSTMODERNSMPostmodernism is a complicated term, or set of ideas, one that has only emerged as an area of academic study since the mid-1980s.It's hard to locate it temporally or historically, because it's not clear exactly when postmodernism begins. It was born as a reaction against excess modernism but we cant seperate them from each other as one covers another.
POSTMODERNSM Instead of the modernist quest for meaning in a chaotic world, the postmodern author eschews, often playfully, the possibility of meaning, and the postmodern novel is often a parody of this quest. Postmodernism is a broad term used to describe movements in a wide range of disciplines, including art, philosophy, critical theory, and music.
POSTMODERNISMMany view postmodernism as a response to the preceding modernist movement, but where modernism simply reacts against classical concepts, particularly in the arts and literature, postmodernism takes this reaction to its extreme conclusion. Indeed, some see postmodernism not as a separate movement, but simply as a continuation of the modernist struggle.
Altough the argument on the exact date of the beginning of post modernism still exists, many claims that the mid 20th century is the first appearance of post modernisms existence after the WWII. Postmodernist writers often point to early novels and story collections as inspiration for their experiments with narrative and structure. In the English language, Laurence Sterne's 1759 novel The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, with its heavy emphasis on parody and narrative experimentation, is often cited as an early influence on postmodernism.
SOME TRACES OF POST-MODERNSM N TRSTRAM SHANDYSterne always directs the reader by intervening in almost all parts of the book. In the extract below(Chapter VI, Vol 1), we see his intention to explain the reader that he has his own style and needs warning the reader that he starts a new way of novel. He gives some hints about the flow of the story and asks the reader to be patient. So he confesses the digression from the main topic all the time.
Then nothing which has touched me will be thought trifling in its nature, or tedious in its telling. Therefore, my dear friend and companion, if you should think me somewhat sparing of my narrative on my first setting outbear with me,and let me go on, and tell my story my own way :or, if I should seem now and then to trifle upon the road,or should sometimes put on a fool's cap with a bell to it, for a moment or two as we pass along,don't fly off,but rather, courteously give me credit for a little more wisdom than appears upon my outside;and, as we jog on, either laugh with me, or at me, or in short do any thing,only keep your temper.
HE S BOTH AUTHOR, NARRATOR AND MAN CHARACTER OF THE BOOK
In the beginning of the last chapter, I informed you exactly when I was born ; but I did not inform you how. No ; that particular was reserved entirely for a chapter by itself; besides, sir, as you and I are in a manner perfect strangers to each other, it would not have been proper to have let you into too many circumstances relating to myself all at once.You must have a little patience. I have undertaken, you see, to write not only my life, but my opinions also; hoping and expecting that your knowledge of my character, and of what kind of a mortal I am, by the one, would give you a better relish for the other. As you proceed farther with me, the slight acquaintance, which is now beginning between us, will grow into familiarity ; and that, unless one of us is in fault, will terminate in friendship.
HE OFTEN REFERS TO THE PREVOUS WORKS BY OTHER WRTERS. THS S ONE OF THE CHARACTERSTCS OF THE POSTMODERNSM
Another open question is whether Sterne's attitude toward Tristram and his project is one of endorsement or irony. Tristram's frequent addresses to the reader (imagined variously and flexibly as Sir, Madam, Dear Reader, your worships, etc.) draw us into the novel. From Tristram's perspective, we are asked to be open-minded, and to follow his lead in an experimental kind of literary adventure. The gap between Tristram-the-author and Sterne-the-author, however, invites us not only to participate with Tristram, but also to assess his character and his narrative.
CHAPTER 20 P. 41How could you, Madam, be so inattentive in reading the last chapter? I told you in it, That my mother was not a papist. Papist! You told'me no such thing, Sir. Madam, I beg leave to repeat it over again; That I told you as plain, at least, as words, by direct inserence, could tell you such a thing.Then, Sir, I must have miss'd a page.No, Madam, you have not miss'd a word.-- Then I was asleep, Sir.My pride, Madam I cannot allow you that refuge. Then, I declare, I know nothing at all about the matter.That, Madam, is the very fault I lay to your charge; and as a punishment for it, I do insist-upon it that you immediately turn back, that is, as soon as you get to the-next full stop, and read the whole chapter over again.
IN SOME PARTS OF THE BOOK HE LEAVES SOME BLANKS FOR THE READERS COMMENTATION
HE DRAWS SOME LNES TO DESCRBE THE DEGREE OF VALUE OF HS EXPERENCES.
By which it appears, that except at the curve, marked A. where I took a trip to Navarre,and the indented curve B. which is the short airing when I was there with the Lady Bauffiere and her page,I have not taken the least frisk of a digression, till John de la Cajse's devils led me the round you fee marked D.for as for c c c c c they are nothing but parentheses, and the common ins and outs incident to the lives of the greatest ministers of state ; and when compared with what men have done,orwith my own transgressions at the letters A B D they vanish into nothing.
THERE ARE SOME LETTERS IN ITS ORIGINAL LANGUAGE
CHAPTER 20 VOL-1Mmoire prsent Messieurs les Docteurs de Sorbonne *. Chirurgien Accoucheur, represente Messieurs les Docteurs de Sorbonne, j' il y a des cas, quoique trs rares, oh une mere ne /sauroit accoucher, & mme oh l'enfant est tellement renferm dans le sein de fa mere, qu' il ne fait paratre aucune partie de son corps, ce qui fer oit un cas, suivant les Rituels, de lui confrer, du moins fous condition, le baptme. Le Chirurgien, qui consulte, prtend, par le moyen d'une petite canulle, de pouvoir baptiser immediatement l'enfant, fans faire aucun tort la mere. Demand fi ce moyen, qu'ilvient de proposer, est permis & lgitime, et s'il peut s'en servir dans le cas qu'il vient d'exposer.
HE ALWAYS REFERS TO THE WORKS BY THE OTHER WRITERS
CHAPER 10 VOL-1Let that be as it may, as my purpose is to do exact justice to every creature brought upon the stage of this dramatic work,I could not stifle this distinction in favour of Don Quixote's horse;in all other points the parson's horse, I say, Was just such another, for he was as Jean, and as lank, and as sorry a jade, as Humility herself could have bestrided.
HE USES MANY FOREIGN WORDS WITHOUT ELLING THEIR MEANING
And yet, this strange, he had never read Cicero nor Quintilian de Oratore, nor Socrates, nor Aristotle, nor Longimis amongst the antients; nor Voffius, nor Skioppius, nor Ramus, nor Farnaby amongst the moderns;and what is more astonishing, he had never in his whole lise the least light or spark of subtilty struckintohis mind, by one single H 4 lecture lecture upon Crackenthorp or Burgersdicius, or any Dutch logician or commentator ;he- knew not so much as in what the difference of-an ajgument ad ignorantiam, and an argument ad hominem consisted; so that I well remember, when he went up along with me to enter my name at Jesus College in.