The Modern Period. (1914-1945). Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961).
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The Modern Period (1914-1945)
Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) • Born in Oak Park, Illinois, Hemingway played football for his high school team. In 1918, during WWI, he joined the Red Cross and went to Italy where he was injured, but found much insight for his writings; thus came “A Farewell To Arms”, his most well known book.
T.S. Eliot (1888-1965) • Eliot was born into a wealthy family with an environment that only encouraged his learning. He went to Harvard, but did graduate work in philosophy at the Sorbonne, Harvard, and Merton College, Oxford. Eliot is very well known for all of his poems, especially “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” and “Portrait of a Lady”.
Zora Neal Hurston (1891-1960) • Hurston was always thought as one of the most influential authors of her time. Her father was the mayor of her town, Eatonville, FLA. After moving from Notasulga AL. At 26, she said her age was 16 to enroll in college classes at Howard University where she was inspired to pursue a career in literature. And her first novel, Jonah’s Gourd Vine, was the most influential work an African-American author has ever done. Sadly, Zora died a poor woman in a unmarked grave.
Langston Hughes (1902-1967) • Born into a abolitionist family in Joplin, Missouri, Hughes began writing poetry in 8th grade. He got a scholarship to Lincoln University where he got his B.A. Some of his poems included “Shakespeare In Harlem” and “The Weary Blues”. He wrote many works other than poetry including novels, short stories, plays and musicals.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940) • Fitzgerald was born in St. Paul, Minnesota and named after the writer of The Star Spangled Banner. He went to Princeton University where he soon left because of poor grades. After leaving school he joined the Army during WWI. Although it was not as insightful as Hemingway, it still helped him to find his wife Zelda. He is best known for his novel The Great Gatsby.
themes Uncertainty The majority of the modern period was spent during the great depression. During this time no one was sure if they would ever be able to prosper again. This was heavily reflected in the writings of the modern period by authors who were also feeling depressed and uncertain at the time. Opposition to dehumanizing trends in modern life “The Depression and the rise of fascism in Europe dominated American literature during the 1930s. Proletarian literature consciously aimed at stimulating protest and in some cases, revolution by the working class.” (Grolier)
Themes. Cont’d. • The writers were going through the same things that the general population were and were able to express this in there writing. • This was popular with the public because they were empathetic with the writers and their feelings.
Harlem Renaissance • During the 1920s- 1930s • Started in the Harlem District of New York • Spur of artists from an African American background writing about life from a black view • Period in writing striving for racial equality • One famous leader named W.E.B. Du Bois, the author of the Crisis editorial, said that racial equality would not come through white ways but rather through racial pride in the races
During a time where minorities were heavily discriminated against • The first true vocal voices of black people emerged • Wrote about racial equality, justice, and unity • Notable writers: Zora Neale Hurston, Countee Cullen, Rudolph Fisher, Langston Hughes, James Weldon Johnson, Du Bois
Lost Generation • The works of American authors after WWI • Main themes were despair and the pursuit of pleasure and happiness • Believed that many American values were skewed • Time period of many important letters written • Name stems from what Gertrude Stein told Ernest Hemingway about the era.
WWl- war between many countries- caused by many things mainly alliances and a race for power. • WWll- war caused (mostly) by Germany as well as various other causes. Germany wanted to sieze power and create a “perfect” Germany by eradicating all imperfects.
Stock Market Crash --Caused by increased loaning without retribution. Caused massive debt leading to the Great Depression • Great Depression -- Many people homeless and without food. Lack of jobs. A low point in the economic system. Key point was in America, but various other depressions throughout.
Modernist Poetry • Time period between the mid 19th century and late 20th century. • Period of heavy experimentation in poetry • Awareness that the world was not the world of the elders • Heavy use of contradiction • Sometimes references and quotes older literary works • Sometimes less concrete and less clear • Notable Authors: T.S. Eliot, Ezra Proud, James Joyce, Virginia Wolf • Ended with World War II
Culture • It was a time of heightened growth of equality of women and minorities. There were activists on all sides starting to fight for this. There had always been a desire for this by some people, but during this time the conflict was starting to be brought forth. People realized that there was a definite issue. Some did not want it, but people understood the problem.
There was a rise of “fancy” hair styles among women. This was due to rationed clothing from the war. Women only could change their hair up for a new look. Instead of doing to a dance with a new dress (as they could not) they gave themselves a more elaborate hair style.
Other goods were also rationed so some people had become more creative in the way they lived. This rationing was necessary so that the soldiers would be able to have what they needed for wartime.
People spent more money than they had. There was an increased amount of borrowing without repaying. This led people to believe that the country was in an economic peak when in reality it was falling deeper down. This was a major cause of the Great Depression.
Everyone had an automobile. Now especially just about everyone started to become custom to the idea of vehicles. It became uncommon not to have one. It started to become a necessity.
Women replaced men in their jobs. This was since the men had mostly gone to war. Women had to take charge and do as the men had done. This helped in the gender equality issue.
Bibliography • "Harlem Renaissance." Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. 2008. Grolier Online. 20 Aug. 2008 <http://gme.grolier.com/cgi-bin/article?assetid=0132270-0>. • Young, Philip. "Lost Generation." Encyclopedia Americana. 2008. Grolier Online. 20 Aug. 2008 <http://ea.grolier.com/cgi-bin/article?assetid=0252190-00>. • Lewis, Pericles. "Modernism." Encyclopedia Americana. 2008. Grolier Online. Aug. 2008 <http://ea.grolier.com/cgi-bin/article?assetid=0273605-00>. • "Ford Motors". Television History. 8/21/08 <http://www.tvhistory.tv/Ford%20Motor%20Company.htm>. • "Financial". Urban Horizon. 8/21/08 <http://urbanhorizon.wordpress.com/>.
Andrew, Jackson. "James Langston Hughes". Red Hot Jazz. 8/24/08 <http://www.redhotjazz.com/hughes.html>. • "F(rancis) Scott (Key) Fitzgerald (1896- 1940)". Books And Writers. 8/24/08 <http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/fsfitzg.htm>. • C.D., Marriman. "F. Scott Fitzgerald". The Literature Network. 8/24/08 <http://www.online-literature.com/fitzgerald/>. • Prentice Hall Literature: Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes: The American Experience. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc., 2004. page numbers. • "Earnest Hemingway". Nobel Prize Literature in 1956. 8/21/08 <http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1954/hemingway-bio.html>. • "T.S. Eliot". Nobel Prize Literature in 1956. 8/21/08 <http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1948/eliot-bio.html>. • "Nora Zeal Hurston". Women In History. 8/21/08 <http://www.lkwdpl.org/wihohio/hurs-zorx.htm>.