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  • 1. Unit 5: Disillusion, Defiance, Discontent (1914-1946)
  • 2. World War I
    • a struggle between the Allies and Central Powers
    • U.S. joined the Allied cause in 1917
    • E.E. Cummings and Ernest Hemingway served as ambulance drivers in the war
  • 3. “ The Roaring Twenties”
    • economic boom, Prohibition problems, and the development of cities
    • arrival of radio, jazz, movies/movie theaters, “fads,” conspicuous wealth
    • the backdrop to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby
  • 4. The Great Depression
    • began with the crash of the stock market in October 1929
    • 12 million people unemployed by mid-1932
    • 1932 - Franklin D. Roosevelt elected, “New Deal” economic reforms brought about an end to the Depression
  • 5. World War II
    • U.S. joined the war after the attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941
    • Allied powers (U.S., Great Britain, France, Soviet Union) defeated the Axis powers (Japan, Nazi Germany, Italy)
    • atomic bombs dropped on two Japanese cities
  • 6. Literature of the Period MODERNISM
    • began as a quest for new ideas / feelings of uncertainty, disillusionment
    • new approaches and techniques - diverse literature
    • all Modernists sought to capture modern life in their work
    • work constructed from fragments / improvised rhymes and free verse / implied and ambiguous themes
  • 7. Literature of the Period IMAGISM
    • the start of the Modernist movement, lasted from 1909 to 1917
    • a popular movement in both the U.S. and England
    • hard, clear expression, concrete images, everyday language
    • H.D., Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams
  • 8. Literature of the Period THE EXPATRIATES
    • many American writers, disillusioned by World War I, became exiles of America
    • many settled in Paris, and were known as the “lost generation”
    • Gertrude Stein, Sherwood Anderson, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot
    • wrote about the chaos and hopelessness of life after the war
  • 9. Literature of the Period NEW APPROACHES
    • stream-of-consciousness - re-creates the natural flow of a character’s thoughts
    • poems - wordplay, unique typography, special punctuation / informal, conversational speech
    • Hemingway – The Sun Also Rises ; stories about World War I and the aftermath, disillusionment
    • Steinbeck – Of Mice and Men , Grapes of Wrath ; stories of the Depression, migrant workers
  • 10. Literature of the Period THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE
    • a movement among African American writers, mostly from the South, in northern Manhattan - 1920s-1930s
    • began with poems by Countee Cullen and Langston Hughes
    • led to a burst of creative activity by African American authors - Claude McKay, Jean Toomer