Modernism and Mass Politics: Joyce, Woolf, Eliot, Yeats

By Michael Tratner | Go to book overview

Notes

INTRODUCTION
1.
William McDougall wrote the most popular psychology text in England during this era, Social Psychology, in 1908; in 1920 he published a theory of mass mentality, The Group Mind. Sorel published Reflections on Violence in 1906; Wallas, Human Nature in Politics in 1908; Trotter, Instincts of the Herd in Peace and War in 1921; and Freud, Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego, in 1921.
2.
Le Bon, The Crowd, p. 21.
3.
Ibid., p. 22.
4.
Sorel, Reflections on Violence, pp. 48-49.
5.
Perloff argues that many of the innovations of modernism were first developed by avant-garde artists who had an "urge to communicate directly with the masses, to play to the crowd." The Futurist Moment, p. 10. For other recent views of the relationship between modernism and mass culture, see Huyssen, "Mass Culture as Woman: Modernism's Other," in After the Great Divide, and Moretti, "From The Waste Land to the Artificial Paradise," in Signs Taken for Wonders.
6.
Richard Poirier has suggested that modernism, though a "snob's game," is also a "colonialist protest" against the nineteenth-century literary forms that claimed to "cater to the ethos of the so-called common man or common reader"--in other words, a protest against the claim of nineteenth-century literary forms to represent the mass mind. "The Difficulties of Modernism," pp. 272-73.
7.
Eliot, "The Humanism of Irving Babbitt," in Essays, pp. 81-82.
8.
Eliot, "Tradition and the Individual Talent," in Selected Prose, pp. 39-40.

-247-

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