Transcendentalism 1836-1860Philosophical movement that began as a rebellion against traditionally held beliefs by the English church that God superseded the individual. A core belief is the inherent goodness of people and nature.
Emily Dickinson 1830-1886Poet, written nearly 1,800 poems in her lifetime.
Best known for her slant rhyme. Many of her poems deal with themes of death and immortality. BECAUSE I COULD NOT STOP FOR DEATH (excerpt 1851)
"Because I could not stop for Death –
He kindly stopped for me –
The Carriage held but just Ourselves –
Walt Whitman 1819-1892He is often called the "Father of Free Verse." Most notable work- "Leaves of Grass" (published in 1855) which was described for its overt sexuality in its time. SONG OF MYSELF- excerpt
"You will hardly know who I am or what I mean,
But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
And filter and fibre your blood. Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged,
Missing me one place search another,
I stop somewhere waiting for you."
Realism and Naturalism 1855-1900Broadly defined as "the faithful representation of reality" or "verisimilitude," realism is a literary technique practiced by many schools of writing. It also denotes a kind of subject matter, especially the representation of middle-class life. Naturalism sought to go further and be more explanatory than Realism by identifying the underlying causes for a person’s actions or beliefs. Certain factors, such as heredity and social conditions, were unavoidable determinants in one’s life.
Regionalism & Naturalism 1870-1910Emphasis on development of believable characters. Written in natural vernacular or dialect.
Historical Context: Urbanization and industrialization of America; Increasing rates of democracy and literacy; The emerging middle class; Upheaval and social change in the latter half of the 19th century.
Mark Twain 1835-1910Also known as Samuel L. Clemens, Mark Twain, Wrote the classic American novels "Tom Sawyer" and "Huckleberry Finn." THE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYER (excerpt 1876)
Now Tom began to scrawl something on the slate, hiding the words from the girl. But she was not backward this time. She begged to see. Tom said: "Oh, it ain't anything." "Yes it is." "No it ain't. You don't want to see."
Jack London 1876-1916Jack London was a 19th century American author and journalist, best known for the adventure novels White Fang and The Call of the Wild.
WHITE FANG (excerpt 1906)
“The Wild still lingered in him and the wolf in him merely slept.”
Modernism 1910-1945Novels, plays, poetry, experiments in writing styles, interior monologue, and stream of consciousness.
Pursuit of American Dream, Admiration for America, Optimism, and Individual Importance.
Reflection of ideas in WWI and WWII.
Gertrude Stein 1874-1946She had parties, where leading figures of modernism in literature and art, such as Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Sinclair Lewis, Ezra Pound, Sherwood Anderson and Henri Matisse, would mee
TENDER BUTTONS (excerpt 1914)
"Within, within the cut and slender join alone, with sudden equals and no more than three, two in the centre make two one side.
If the elbow is long and it is filled so then the best example is all together.
The kind of show is made by squeezing."
Robert Frost 1874-1963He makes depictions of rural life and command of American colloquial speech, he wrote about rural life in New England in the early twentieth century, to examine social and philosophical themes.
BIRCHES (excerpt 1916)
"I'd like to go by climbing a birch tree,
And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk
Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more,
But dipped its top and set me down again.
That would be good both going and coming back.
One could do worse than be a swinger of birches."
Harlem Renaissance 1920-1930Blues Song in Poetry and African American Spirituals.
Brought about Gospel Music.
Historical Context: Mass African American Migration to Northern Urban Centers. African Americans are given more access to media and publishing.
Langston Hughes 1902-1967Urged African American artists to embrace black popular culture. "The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain," published at the height of the Harlem Renaissance, Takes aim at white audiences who looked to black artists for entertainment. THE NEGRO SPEAKS OF RIVERS (excerpt 1921)
"I've known rivers:
I've known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers"
Wallace Stevens 1879-1955Stevens ignored the literary world and he did not receive widespread recognition until the publication of his Collected Poems (1954).
THE EMPEROR OF ICE-CREAM (excerpt 1923)
Call the roller of big cigars,
The muscular one, and bid him whip
In kitchen cups concupiscent curds.
Let the wenches dawdle in such dress
As they are used to wear, and let the boys
Bring flowers in last month's newspapers.
Let be be finale of seem.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.
Williams Carlos Williams 1883-1963Williams Carlos Williams is an American poet and physician closely associated with modernism and imagism.
THE RED WHEELBARROW (excerpt 1923)
so much depends
a red wheel
glazed with rain
beside the white
T.S. Eliot 1888-1965He is an essayist, publisher, playwright, literary and social critic, and "one of the twentieth century's major poets" THE HOLLOW MEN (excerpt 1925)
"Eyes I dare not meet in dreams
In death's dream kingdom
These do not appear:
There, the eyes are"
F. Scott Fitzgerald 1896-1940An American writer, whose works illustrate the Jazz Age. While he achieved limited success in his lifetime, he is now widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s.
THE GREAT GATSBY (excerpt 1925)
“So we drove on toward death through the cooling twilight.”
William Faulkner 1897-1962Experimented with narrative chronology and with techniques for representing mind and memory. He invented an entire southern county and wrote its history.
A ROSE FOR EMILY (excerpt 1931)
"Then we noticed that in the second pillow was the indentation of a head. One of us lifted something from it, and leaning forward, that faint and invisible dust dry and acrid in the nostrils, we saw a long strand of iron-gray hair."
Earnest Hemingway 1899-1961He had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his adventurous lifestyle and his public image brought him admiration from later generations. Many of his works are considered classics of American literature.
THE SNOWS OF KILIMANJARO (excerpt 1936)
"There was no answer and she could not hear him breathing. Outside the tent the hyena made the same strange noise that had awakened her. But she did not hear him for the beating of her heart."
E.E. Cummings 1894-1962He wrote approximately 2900 poems, two autobiographical novels, four plays, and several essays. ANYONE LIVED IN A PRETTY HOW TOWN (excerpt 1940)
"all by all and deep by deep
and more by more they dream their sleep
noone and anyone earth by april
wish by spirit and if by yes."
Contemporary Literature 1940-PresentShift in emphasis from homogeneity to celebrating diversity.
Historical Context: after attack on Pearl Harbor (1941), U.S. enters Vietnam War (1965), Terrorist attacks on U.S. (2001), Barack Obama becomes first African American President (2009).
John Steinbeck 1902-1968His work merged literary modernism with literary realism, celebrated traditional rural communities along with social outcasts and immigrant cultures, and endorsed conservative values and radical politics at the same time.
THE LEADER OF THE PEOPLE (excerpt 1945)
"Every man wanted something for himself, but the big beast that was all of them wanted only westering. I was the leader, but if I hadn't been there, someone else would have been the head. The thing had to have a head."
Tennessee Williams 1911-1983In Williams's plays-he wrote and rewrote more than twenty full-length dramas as well as screenplays and shorter works- his characters are driven by the size of their feelings, much as Williams felt driven to write about them.
A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE (excerpt 1947)
Blanche: "He implored my forgiveness. But some things are not forgivable. Deliberate cruelty is not forgivable. It is the one unforgivable thing in my opinion and it is the one thing of which I have never, never been guilty."
Sylvia Plath 1932-1963Plath is credited with advancing the genre of confessional poetry and is best known for two of her published collections, The Colossus and Other Poems and Ariel, and The Bell Jar, a semi-autobiographical novel published shortly before her death. MORNING SONG (excerpt 1961)
"Love set you going like a fat gold watch.
The midwife slapped your footsoles, and your bald cry
Took its place among the elements."
Denise Levertov 1923-1997As poetry editor for The Nation, she was able to support and publish the work of feminist and other leftist activist poets. The Vietnam War was an especially important focus of her poetry, which often tried to weave together the personal and political, as in her poem "The Sorrow Dance," which speaks of her sister's death.
From-The Sorrow Dance (1967)
"Life after life goes by without poetry, without seemliness, without love."
Audre Lorde 1934-1992As a poet, she is best known for technical mastery and emotional expression, as well as her poems that express anger and outrage at civil and social injustices she observed throughout her life. Her poems and prose largely deal with issues related to civil rights, feminism, and the exploration of black female identity.
THE WOMAN THING (excerpt 1968)
"In the night after food they may seek young girls for their amusement. But now the hunters are coming and the unbaked girls flee from their angers."
Maxine Hong Kingston 1940-PresentShe has received several awards for her contributions to Chinese American literature, including the National Book Award for Nonfiction in 1981 for China Men.
THE WOMAN WARRIOR (excerpt 1976)
"I do not think she always means me well. I am telling on her, and she was a spite suicide, drowning herself in the drinking water. The Chinese are always very frightened of the drowned one whose weeping ghost, wet hair hanging and skin bloated, waits silently by the water to pull down a substitute."
Leslie Marmon Silko 1948-PresentA Laguna Pueblo writer and one of the key figures in the First Wave of what literary critic Kenneth Lincoln has called the Native American Renaissance.
"The earth is your mother, she holds you. The sky is your father, he protects you. Sleep, Sleep. Rainbow is your sister, she loves you."
Alice Walker 1944-PresentShe wrote the novel The Color Purple (1982), for which she won the National Book Award for hardcover fiction, and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
Sofia: All my life I had to fight. I had to fight my daddy. I had to fight my uncles. I had to fight my brothers. A girl child ain't safe in a family of men. But I ain't never thought I'd have to fight in my own house! I loves Harpo, God knows I do. But I'll kill him dead 'fo I let him beat me!
Gloria Anzaldua 1942-2004Anzaldúa self-identifies in her writing as a feminist, and her major works are often associated with Chicana feminism and postcolonial feminism. Anzaldúa writes of the oppression she experiences specifically as a woman of color, as well as the restrictive gender roles that exist within the Chicano community. In Borderlands, she also addresses topics such as sexual violence perpetrated against women of color.
"We know how to survive. When other races have given up their tongue, we've kept ours."
Joan Didion 1934-PresentNew Journalism seeks to communicate facts through narrative storytelling and literary techniques. This style is also described as creative nonfiction, intimate journalism, or literary nonfiction. It is a popular moment in the longer history of literary journalism in America.
THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING (excerpt 2005)
"When I read this at breakfast almost eleven months after the night with the ambulance and the social worker I recognized the thinking as my own."
Crystal Stolze 1996-PresentAspiring author and actress.
"Lush, green, grass covered the hillsides. He knelt down by her grave and looked at the city with her. The two qantu plants on either side of them waving in the breeze gave a floral aroma. The journal, forever following him, felt heavy in his goatskin bag. Ayamarka looked at the grave of his scarlet bird, a single qantu flower landing where she lay."
Phil gave crystal an A+In retaliation to Bailee Bob's A+ on her timeline project, Stolze made her own A+.