By Peter Stoneley, Cindy Weinstein
An authoritative advisor to American literature, this spouse examines the experimental types, socio-cultural alterations, literary pursuits, and significant authors of the early twentieth century. This better half presents authoritative and wide-ranging suggestions on early twentieth-century American fiction.
- Considers often studied authors resembling Faulkner, Fitzgerald, and Hemingway, along key texts of the interval by means of Richard Wright, Charles Chesnutt, Zora Neale Hurston, and Anzia Yezierska
- Examines how the works of those assorted writers were interpreted of their personal day and the way present readings have accelerated our knowing in their cultural and literary value
- Covers a huge variety of issues, together with the 1st and moment global Wars, literary language changes, writer superstar, the city panorama, modernism, the Jazz Age, the nice melancholy, regionalism, and African-American fiction
- Gives scholars the contextual details helpful for formulating their very own evaluations of vintage American fiction
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Extra info for A concise companion to American fiction, 1900-1950
Hughes American naturalism, and its relation to realism, in more detail. For now, we wish to note the way in which naturalists – among whom we might include Henry Adams – believed that these primitivist forces were being unleashed in the world. They contended that the forces of market capitalism existed as extensions of or arenas for this animality. Frank Norris titled the ﬁrst part of his “Epic of the Wheat” trilogy The Octopus (1901) – a naming of the railroad as an insatiable beast whose hunger can neither be subdued nor whose will affected by human intervention.
Chesnutt leaves off writing with these words, abandoning the reader with only the exigency of the situation. Why should Miller help the family that destroyed his own? One cannot help but read a parallel question into Chesnutt’s novel: Why should African Americans attempt to be helpful citizens in a country that abuses them? Howells wrote that he found Marrow of Tradition “bitter, bitter,” a comment that betrays how ill-prepared the conventions of literary realism were for the harsh violence of the turn of the twentieth century.
Suggesting them evocatively, rather than articulating them in detail, is part of the dilemma of the novel. The literary imagination of the turn of the twentieth century simply has no space in which a heroine like this can live. Nor is her demise an isolated example. Although written in a style much more fully conversant with the idiom of American realism, Edith Wharton’s House of Mirth (1905) also ends with its protagonist’s death, another possible suicide, this time the result of a complicated matrix of upperclass social mores and economics.
A concise companion to American fiction, 1900-1950 by Peter Stoneley, Cindy Weinstein