American Lit 1865 1914


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American Lit 1865 1914

  1. 1. American Literature: 1865-1914 <ul><li>Dr. C </li></ul>
  2. 2. The literature of Realism(1865-1918) <ul><li>I. Historical Introduction: Why was the War Fought? </li></ul><ul><li>the Civil War brought about 3 results: </li></ul><ul><li>1. Further industrialization, mechanization, urbanization, development of transportation and communication. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Westward movement, Homestead Act, by 1890, the last of the first 48 states were settled. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Northern Migration by African Americans </li></ul>
  3. 3. Literary Characteristics <ul><li>1. Feminist movement. Emily Dickinson, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Sarah Orne Jewett, Kate Chopin, Edith Wharton, Ellen Glasgow, Willa Cather. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Decline of American Romanticism, Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Appearance of American realism </li></ul><ul><li>4. Appearance of American naturalism. </li></ul>
  4. 4. American Realism <ul><li>1. Subjects: Civil War, social development. People sought to describe the wide range of American experience and to present the subtleties of human personality, to portray characters who were less simply all good or all bad. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Realism originated in France. A literary doctrine that called for “reality and truth” in the depiction of ordinary life. </li></ul><ul><li>3. American realism, different from European realism, is more varied and individualistic. </li></ul>
  5. 5. American Realism, Cont... <ul><li>4. Development of American realism: first appeared in the literature of local color, arbiter: William Dean Howells. He defined realism as “nothing more and nothing less than the truthful treatment of material”. </li></ul><ul><li>5. Important writers: Henry James, Mark Twain. </li></ul>
  6. 6. American Naturalism <ul><li>1. Naturalism came from France. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Reasons: civil war, social upheavals, Darwinism, hypothesized that over the millennia, man had evolved from lower forms of life. Human were special, not because God had created them in His image, as the Bible taught, but because they had successfully adapted to changing environmental conditions and had passed on their survival-making characteristic genetically. Men were dominated by the irresistible forces of evolution. Men were conceived as more or less complex combination of inherited attributes and habits conditioned by social and economic forces, by heredity and environment. </li></ul>
  7. 7. American Naturalism, cont... <ul><li>3. Features of naturalist writing: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A. naturalist writers turned literary creation into a mechanical record of society. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They never made comments on the characters and their behaviors. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The characters were often figures of low social and economic classes, with animal desire, some physically strong but weak-willed figures. There were also some healthy and lofty persons, but their ending were miserable. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They stressed men had no free will, their lives were controlled by heredity and environment. </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Reconstruction <ul><li>A reordering of the South - Designed to equalize the playing field and to rebuild damaged cities. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Important Organizations/Legislation <ul><li>Freedman’s Bureau - 1865 </li></ul><ul><li>Reconstruction Act - 1867, The ballot, right to hold office </li></ul><ul><li>14th Amendment - 1868, Citizenship for Blacks </li></ul><ul><li>15th Amendment - 1870, No discrimination in voting on account of race, color or previous servitude </li></ul><ul><li>Civil Rights Act - 1857, Equal treatment in public accommodations </li></ul>
  10. 10. Post-Reconstruction <ul><li>Mid-1870s, marked a return to servitude and white supremacy </li></ul><ul><li>1877, Northern troops withdrawn from South </li></ul><ul><li>1883, Supreme Court rescinds Civil Rights Act of 1875 </li></ul><ul><li>1895, Washington’s “Atlanta Compromise” speech </li></ul><ul><li>1896, Plessy vs. Ferguson </li></ul>
  11. 11. Native Americans <ul><li>Native American Act under full swing by 1870s, clearing the way for Westward expansion </li></ul><ul><li>Ghost Dancers </li></ul><ul><li>Assimilation by some </li></ul>
  12. 12. Spatial Disjunction <ul><li>Distancing ones self from how and where various commodities are produced </li></ul>
  13. 13. Social Darwinism <ul><li>Darwin’s idea of “survival of the fittest” applied to humans by Herbert Spencer - Justification for colonialism, imperialism, racism </li></ul>
  14. 14. Upcoming Assignments: <ul><li>Self Introduction on Course Blog - Midnight, Jan. 21 </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-Course Survey - Midnight, Jan. 21 </li></ul><ul><li>Email to me with statements - Midnight, Jan. 21 </li></ul><ul><li>Quiz 1 - Midnight, Jan. 21 </li></ul>