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Wright’s literary career was encouraged by the Communist Party-sponsored John Reed Club and nurtured within the proletarian literary movement whose writers were committed to representing class inequality and warfare from the standpoint of the eventual triumph of the proletariat. Like many other proletarian writers, his fiction is, therefore, strongly influenced by the philosophy of dialectical materialism popular within the Communist movement. Wright’s fiction, notably Uncle Tom’s Children and Native Son, powerfully synthesizes a dialectical perspective with literary realist and naturalist representational techniques, although he also experimented with avant-garde literary techniques he associated with the likes of James Joyce and Gertrude Stein, as evident in Lawd Today! His fiction depicts the ways in which his mostly poor, working-class black characters suffer intensely from the class system of capitalism and the racism it engenders. It also depicts the inherent potentials within his characters’ lives to transcend ideologically and materially the inimical social system at the root of their suffering.
Although it adopts and adapts both realism and naturalism, Richard Wright’s Native Son (1940) becomes, by Book Three (“Fate”), a modernist drama of consciousness. Native Son thus calls for a broad definition of the modern novel, one that reaches from Dostoevsky to Faulkner, includes Dreiser as well as Proust, and extends to Wright himself. Wright’s protagonist Bigger Thomas embodies the realist vision of the individual immersed in society and history as well as the modernist idea of alienation, for Bigger is both the doomed victim of forces beyond his control and the shaper of his own inner world of consciousness. By means of the tension between these perspectives, and by immersing the reader in Bigger’s internal quest for meaning at great length, Wright succeeds in crafting a novel that is modernist in its rejection of outmoded epistemologies yet eloquent on behalf of the voiceless.
This conclusion makes two arguments. First, it contends that containment strategies need sound “theories of change,” which are predictions about how the pressures of containment will compel the target state to change its behavior without the need for war. A robust theory of change is crucial for maintaining both strategic coherence and domestic political support for containment strategies. I explore this point with a comparison of Cold War and Iraqi containment strategies in which I show that the former policy had a robust theory of change while the latter did not. Second, the conclusion argues that US foreign policy-makers, politicians, and intellectuals have long interpreted the ultimate cause of other states' behavior as stemming from the nature of their political regimes. This type of thinking, inherent to certain strains of liberalism, has often pushed the United States to pursue total solutions by seeking to fundamentally change other states' regimes, as it did with Iraq.
The second half of the book turns to the novels of Thackeray, Trollope, and Meredith to demonstrate how stylistic virtues offer an historicized hermeneutic that can change our understanding of texts and Victorian prose forms. It begins with William Makepeace Thackeray because he was considered by many to be the period’s most capable stylist, though few understand this assessment today. The fault lies in part with the traditions of Thackerayan criticism. Obsessed with the quality of his narrative voice, many have focused on Thackeray’s unity (or disunity) of tone, leading to dubious interpretations of key early works. By rethinking these interpretations, which stem from thematically oriented criticism, Chapter 4 shows that there is a difference between Thackeray’s satirical personality and the protean adaptability of his stylistic guises. The consequence for readers of major works like Pendennis or The Newcomes is a hyper-awareness of “grace,” a form of stylistic versatility and detachment that exists in productive tension with the author’s other ethical attitudes.
Of all Victorian authors, Trollope comes closest to aspiring to the “degree zero” style that has played such an important role in modern theorizations of prose. Committed to an ideal of stylistic transparency, Trollope sought the unmediated transmission of authorial thought-content, borrowing from the more psychological strains of belletrism. However, Chapter 5 challenges the moralization of Trollope’s “disappearing” style as honest or forthright by cataloguing the acts of formal deception necessary to render such effects. Moreover, Trollope’s writings on style reveal his interest in non-mimetic features of prose such as harmony and rhythm, challenging “ease” and “lucidity” as preeminent realist virtues. The chapter concludes that Trollope’s blend of Attic simplicity with Ciceronian schemes proves his style to be one of the most artfully mannered in Victorian English, creating an impression of aesthetic virtuosity where many critics have seen only functional pedestrianism.
Nineteenth-century literary realism develops alongside but is not identical to clinical medical realism. Recent scholarly work has focused, for good reason, on how literary and medical realisms overlapped during this period. However, it is useful also to consider some differences: dissimilarities in language (literary writers privileged spoken vernacular, while physicians developed a written rhetoric with a complex, specialized professional vocabulary), demography (literary realism largely chronicled the middle classes and respectable working people, while hospital-trained physicians wrote about poor urban patients), methodologies (medical men explored quantifiable data; literary realists continued to employ lengthy description), definitions of truth (medical reportage works to present a truthful portrayal of real events; literary rendering strives for a credible portrayal of fictional ones), and relation to the balance of detachment and sympathy (clinical physicians believed that detachment underwrites medical progress, although they did not always deny their sensibilities, often turning to literary realism or romance to manage such moments rhetorically). This chapter argues that medical and literary writers, attempting to negotiate, overcome, or uphold these key differences, defined what it meant for Victorians to tell the truth, well aware that all realism is a representation, and representation is only an approximation of the real.
What social conditions produce positivism? One position, common to both positivists and some of their major critics, suggests that positivism is an “ideology” or “worldview” of industrial capitalism. Positivism therefore resonates with the basic experience of capitalism for all social groups. Intellectuals draw on this experience in formulating positivist social science. A second position suggests that positivism is a strategy of distinction by which intellectuals attempt to accumulate symbolic capital against their rivals. This position suggests that positivism is a resource for establishing a social science that imitates the methodology of natural science. Our article argues for a third view focused on the internal structure of the intelligentsia as a social group. Positivism could emerge in both industrial capitalist and preindustrial contexts; however, the types of positivism differ in these two cases because the structure of the intelligentsia differs. In preindustrial contexts, such as nineteenth-century Italy, which is the focus of our analysis, positivists claim an ontological continuity between natural and social sciences. In industrial contexts, on the basis of which most theories of positivism rest, positivists claim a methodological similarity between natural and social sciences. We conclude our analysis by reflecting on the implications of our study for work on positivism and social ontology in the social sciences.
The landmark texts of Asian American literature from the mid-twentieth century have often been classified as realist. Presenting “real-life” depictions of Japanese American incarceration during World War II and the immigrant experience, for instance, Asian American writing of the time is known for its referentiality to historical events. Recently, however, literary critics have sought to redefine the genre of realism, which has also led to a reconsideration of how canonical Asian American literature represented the deeper structure of Asian American life from 1930 to 1965. This chapter traces how Asian American literary critics have offered a more theoretically complex approach to realism in order to help draw out richer understandings of the way Asian American literature has articulated Asian American social experience. In addition, this entry provides brief readings of classic Asian American texts, notably John Okada’s No-No Boy and Carlos Bulosan’s America Is in the Heart, through a realist frame.
Steinbeck received much of his early training in creative writing classes at Stanford University. Focusing on Steinbeck’s short story cycle, The Pastures of Heaven, this chapter explores Steinbeck’s education in writing--and his resistance to many of its principles--as it relates to his understanding of the colonial history of the American West. The unstable mixture of realist and fantastic forms, particularly as they relate to the construction of literary character, here encapsulates an ambivalent resonse to the haunting lagacies of slavery and race in the California land. The second part of the chapter, on the story “The Snake,” traces another aspect of Steinbeck’s education--this time in the scientific laboratory--to understand an approach to gender more complex than critics would admit. The experiment with narrative point of view uncovers sexist ideologies in the purportedly objective act of scientific observation, thus bringing attention to the process of attention itself.
The TPNW was welcomed at the UN General Assembly, under the participation of a wide range of humanitarian groups and civil society organizations, supported by a groundswell of nations around the world. The Treaty firmly implants new law into the international legal landscape for states who wish to ratify it, sowing the seeds of potentially new normative behavior within the global community more generally. Indeed, the TPNW purports to strive for universality, raising significant questions regarding its ambitions in achieving legal unity within the wider international legal order. The dedication to the spirit of the Treaty cannot be ignored, nor can the optimism to ban nuclear weapons.
When Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins wrote and published her serial novel Hagar’s Daughter: A Story of Caste Prejudice in the Colored American Magazine from 1901 to 1902, African Americans’ struggle for sociopolitical recognition seemed reflected in two images: Booker T. Washington’s White House dinner and lynching postcards. The political implications of the Washington visit and the lynching epidemic appear to be squarely at odds with one another, yet Hopkins, a former singer and actress, editor, and novelist, proposes in Hagar’s Daughter that an important connection binds them: a politics of performance. Like many writers of her time, Hopkins moved away from realism. However, she did not do so to undertake determinism as an explanation for African American evolution or devolution. Instead, Hopkins turned toward the concept of performance to interrogate American epistemologies of sociopolitical progress.
Chapter 2 focuses on the debate about war prevention in the Bryce Group, the first pro-league circle in Britain. While scholars have tended to associate the pro-league activists with utopianism, some focused studies of the group have mostly depicted its post-war plan as a product of realistic thinking. This chapter reveals that their early thinking defies simple categorisation. Not only was their war prevention plan realistic about the role of armed force, but it also depended critically on idealistic expectations about the moral force of public opinion. Realistic and idealistic views could rarely be separated, and both of them developed the group’s plan for peace which incorporated the collective use of force as a crucial element of the post-war order. Although the group attempted to maintain a balance between the two views, the result was inconsistencies and contradictions, which remained in the war prevention system of the League of Nations.
Ibsen, who originally wanted to be a painter, came of age at a time when theatre and painting were still considered closely connected art forms. Throughout most of the nineteenth century, painters would paint scenes from plays, and playwrights would create plays inspired by paintings. In their salons, the aristocracy admired pictorial performances known as ‘attitudes’ or ‘living sculptures’ and staged tableaux vivants, theatrical enactments of famous paintings. The constant interaction between the ‘sister arts’ created an aesthetic environment in which it felt natural to think about paintings in dramatic terms and about drama in painterly terms. Thus Ibsen was inspired by painters such as the English Pre-Raphaelites and the Swiss Arnold Böcklin.
Throughout his career, from relatively early works like ‘Terje Vigen’ and Peer Gynt to modern plays like The Wild Duck, The Lady from the Sea, Hedda Gabler, John Gabriel Borkman and When We Dead Awaken, Ibsen included traditional painterly tableaux in his works. But modernism swept away the idea of ‘sister arts’. Although Ibsen never abandoned his traditional understanding of painting, this chapter shows that in his contemporary plays his traditional visual aesthetics emerges as a seamless part of a new, radically modern vision.
Ibsen, more than any other playwright, established realism as a vital mode in the theatre. The nature of Ibsen’s realism, however, warrants careful description. Realism for Ibsen is simultaneously a theatrical technique and a philosophical stance. We find realism at work in Ibsen’s dialogue, scenery and characterization, as well as in the plays’ relentless critique of bourgeois ideals. Ibsen was not the first realist dramatist, but he remains its most influential practitioner. This legacy is somewhat ironic, given the disturbing surreality that leeches through the realist surface of his plays. And yet, the spark of recognition the plays continue to ignite bears witness to realism’s effectiveness, as audiences continue to find themselves represented, in all their faults, in his towering dramas.
This chapter explores what was distinctive about the French response to Ibsen. It discusses key points and examples that illustrate Ibsen’s complex relationship to France and French history, politics, and culture, and how Ibsen and French culture have subtly influenced one another for nearly 150 years. To Ibsen, France stood for revolutionary idealism. The chapter gives an overview of Ibsen’s breakthrough in France in a succession of modes, from realist to naturalist to symbolist, and discusses the theatrical and cultural contexts that shaped the translations, productions and reception of his plays. Examples of specific productions reveal there was another side to the French Ibsen, as he was often adapted to the boulevard theatres in ways that radically altered the plays, for instance by dampening their feminism.
The chapter outlines four major currents in academic Ibsen criticism, all of which have their roots in how Ibsen’s plays were received as early as the 1860s. The modernist Ibsen stems from his well-known inscrutability, and reached its peak in the criticism of the mid-twentieth century. Critics focusing on the realist Ibsen typically highlight his power as a social critic, in the tradition of George Bernard Shaw’s The Quintessence of Ibsenism from 1890. The image of an idealist Ibsen emerges from the seemingly indefatigable existence of lofty ideals in his work, ideals that remain in sight whether or not they prove tragically unfulfilled. Finally, there is a romantic-demonic Ibsen, particularly analysed by G. Wilson Knight and Harold Bloom, which emphasizes the playwright’s tendency to first and foremost delight in his own aestheticized transgressions of ordinary morality.
The account developed in Chapter 2 may seem to conflict with Kant’s view that the judgment of taste is a distinctive sort of judgment requiring critical investigation. It has been argued, on the other hand, that Kant’s view is confused: there is no sense of “subjectivity” that sets the judgment of taste apart from other judgments (such as judgments of color) that also lay claim to normativity but present no special problem. This chapter addresses both objections. My reading suggests a requisite sense of “subjectivity.” The judgment of taste is subjective for two related reasons. The first has to do with its essential singularity, which, as I elaborate it, is more radical than the denial of principles or the holism of reasons associated with aesthetic or moral particularism. The second reason is tied to the distinctiveness of the judgment of taste’s claim to normativity. I argue that the judgment of taste represents its object as calling for recognition, where aesthetic recognition should be understood as akin to the acknowledgment of a person. My account yields an explanation of the “autonomy” of taste, according to which one’s judgment of taste must be grounded in one’s own experience of the object.
Adding explicit qualitative techniques to experimental research can strengthen a project by facilitating tests of key assumptions and offering chances for inductive discovery. Scholars planning an experiment should consider adding qualitative components to explore the meaning of the treatment, the measurement of the outcome, the exhaustiveness of the intended interpretation of the treatment, the existence of network effects and spillover, and reasons for differences in causal effects among groups within the experiment or across settings for the experiment.
Despite his role in pragmatism’s resurgence, when it comes to classical pragmatism Rorty’s work has blocked the road of inquiry. His selective interpretations spurred sharp lines of demarcation distinguishing “classical” or “paleo” pragmatism from its “neo” and “new” offspring to protect both classical and new pragmatisms alike from Rorty’s distortive readings. This chapter seeks to move contemporary pragmatism beyond these impasses by investigating largely unexamined avenues of shared commitment between Rorty and Peirce, Dewey, and James. I argue that Rorty is best read as reconstructing classical pragmatism rather than misunderstanding it. After establishing Rorty’s underappreciated early engagement with pragmatism, I trace the influence of Peirce on Rorty’s thought, which includes a commitment to language and to a distinct form of realism which was later obscured. Recognizing Rorty’s notion of “philosophy as cultural politics” as a close relative of Dewey’s conception of philosophy as cultural criticism yields complementary insights overshadowed by the experience vs. language debate. I then elucidate the shared ethics of belief that emerges from James’s “unfinished” universe and Rorty’s recognition of contingency to guide their commitments to agency and a conception of knowledge in which humans are active participants in the construction of what is right and true.
Two High Court chief justices may be considered candidates for the title of 'Australia’s Towering Justice’: Sir Owen Dixon and Sir Anthony Mason. Dixon’s claim to the title lies in his articulation of a formalistic doctrinal methodology – ‘Dixonian legalism’ – which held firm for decades. Mason’s claim lies in his unshackling of the Court from legalism, and his reconceptualising of the Court’s role within the Australian system of government. This heralded a form of realism that led to the development of doctrines, some first propounded by Dixon himself, that would progress individual liberties and democratic participation in a constitutional system lacking comprehensive rights protections. This chapter claims that Mason’s legacy is the most important today. His Court’s methodological realism and explicit acknowledgement of values and policy in judicial decision-making, and the doctrinal development that gave the Australian ‘people’ constitutional status and protections, all continue to shape modern constitutional law and debates over the judicial role and method. It is against Mason and the jurisprudence of his Court that modern legalists must now define – and defend – themselves.