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Title: Modernity and the Alienated Self: A Critical Reading of D.H. Lawrence’s Aaron’s Rod
Authors: Das, Sriya
Keywords: Modernity
Issue Date: 27-Feb-2022
Publisher: Registrar, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore.
Series/Report no.: Journal of the Department of English. Vol. 15 2022;
Abstract: The period of late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries witnessed various forms of transformation that impacted, very effectively, on the self of the modern individual. The ramifications of the two World Wars pervaded not merely the social milieu, but also encroached on the private life, thereby leading to an acute sense of existential crises and demoralisation. Modern man confronted a kind of dilemma as he could not embrace the shifting discourses of his immediate present completely, nor could he fall back on the former patterns of life. This is probably why the enigma of the fragmented self in the post war scenario turns out to be a crucial area of scholarly enquiry. The present paper would renegotiate the idea of the modernist angst as reflected in D.H. Lawrence’s Aaron’s Rod (1922) in order to highlight manifold problematics of the modern self. It would question the very notion of modernity and present it as an idealistic (also, cerebral) construct which apparently disseminates the narrative of releasing humanity from the cobweb of traditionalism, but actually leads man into a claustrophobic world of simulation, multiplicity and disintegration. Aaron’s Rod captures the sense of ennui, emanating from the invisible shackles of modernity that destabilise the idea of a rational, unified selfhood and individual autonomy.
ISSN: 0973-3671
Appears in Collections:Journal of the Department of English - Vol 15 [2022]

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