Fragmentation gained reputation as a feature of culture and art in the twentieth century. It is during the postmodernism period that people started seeking the real rather than the surface meaning of literary works. Barry denotes modernism as a rejection of traditional beliefs. From the definition of postmodernism, fragmentation is characterized by an eclectic approach (Barry, 88). Eclectic in turn suggests the use of fragmented forms to incorporate the element of chance or randomness.
The definition undermines the sense of order, universal truths, meta narratives and timeless values. It also rejects the distinction between high and lower art. Barry goes ahead and ascertain that truths are relative and can therefore be many plural realities rather than a universal single truth that all must embrace without questioning. In the beginning theory, Barry stresses that what makes literary works difficult to be understood is the language and not the ideas. Therefore, in postmodernism escaping from claustrophobic beliefs denotes a situation where people move away from beliefs that beforehand used to confine the interpretation of the literary works and embracing new ideas that were previously unacceptable by majority of people (Barry, 102). Many of the social experiences are scripted by conventions and informed by stereotypes. Literary works most of the time seeks to disrupt expectations.
David Cooley gives the idea of writing poems without following the predetermined styles as a formal belief that has been hard for many people to disintegrate from. Breaking away from Past metaphor, past rhyme, past metre and grammatical phrasing allows people to rethink about lines and depart from the universally accepted truths to formulating new veracities. “Once we move off& away from metre, we’re in a position to rethink the line” (Cooley, 108). Cooley advocates “free verse” poetry as a way of breaking fragmenting away from modernism and a new era of focusing more on the ideas of literary works rather than the styles or principles that guide literary works.
In the absence of metre, a line can be divided in ways such as grammatical units, oracular lines, Ogden nashing, Marianne mooring, physical limits, arbitrariness, freeing parts of speech, syntactical ambiguity, and speech model and as a separate unit of meaning. These forms are easily understood by the reader thus making it easier for them to digest the meaning (Cooley, 102). This averts the scenario where the reader is confused due to use of styles and following of principles that hinder their understanding. Cooley ascertains that people look at massive delusions when it comes breaking of lines. “Lazy poets want to believe that they are inside language that is natural in its origin and neutral in its use.” (Cooley, 118). The various truths pass through language but we should not be so conservative as not to change the use of language. Individually, David is not interested in writing novels with enclosing long arcs unless the word is understood in a rambunctiously postmodern way.
Bloody jack abandons all the pretense of capturing slick words. Literary works keep on swerving, surprising, condemning and surprising along the way to bring out the concept of fragmentation. Cooley finds new language for the mingling of terror and yearning for information (Cooley, 98). Fragmentation increases the participation of literary works in the contemporary pursuit of knowledge. It makes reading to be a productive, provisional and a sense-making inter-subjective activity. Fragmentation therefore has enabled literary works to divert from set principles that hindered the freedom of artists to freely communicate ideas.
Barry, Peter. Beginning Theory. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002. Print.
Cooley, Dennis. Bloody Jack. Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 2002. Print.
Cooley, Dennis. The Vernacular Muse: The Eye and the Ear in Contemporary Literature. Winnipeg, Man: Turnstone Press, 1987. Print.