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American Literature and Culture 1900-1960

ISBN: 978-0-470-68047-6
264 pages
April 2008, Wiley-Blackwell
American Literature and Culture 1900-1960 (0470680474) cover image
This introduction to American literature and culture from 1900 to 1960 is organized around four major ideas about America: that is it “big”, “new”, “rich”, and “free”.

  • Illustrates the artistic and social climate in the USA during this period.

  • Juxtaposes discussion of history, popular culture, literature and other art forms in ways that foster discussion, questioning, and continued study.

  • An appendix lists relevant primary and secondary works, including websites.

  • An ideal supplement to primary texts taught in American literature courses.
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List of Illustrations.

Timeline.

Acknowledgments.

Introduction.

1. Big.

Expansion and its Discontents.

The City.

Representing Nature.

Apocalypse.

The Sense of Place.

2. Rich.

Weber and Veblen: Reasons to Work and Reasons to Spend.

USA.

Work and Identity.

Labor Reform.

Consumption and Identity.

3. New.

Beginning Anew: Crevecoeur and Hawthorne.

Young America.

Making It New I: Literary Modernism.

Making It New II: The Other Arts.

4. Free.

The Multiple Meanings of Freedom.

War and the Affirmation of American Values.

Writing War.

Upstream Against the Mainstream.

“An Inescapable Network of Mutuality”.

Notes.

Websites for Further Study of American Literature and Culture.

Bibliography.

Index

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Gail McDonald is Senior Lecturer in English at the University of Southampton. She is the author of Learning to Be Modern: Pound, Eliot, and the American University (1993). She is also a Founder and Past President of the Modernist Studies Association.
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  • A novel introduction to American literature and culture from 1900-1960.

  • Illustrates the artistic and social climate in the USA during this period.

  • Organized by four ideas about America: that it is “big”, “new”, “rich” and “free”.

  • Juxtaposes discussion of history, popular culture, literature and other art forms in ways that foster discussion, questioning, and continued study.

  • An appendix lists relevant primary and secondary works, including websites.

  • An ideal supplement to primary texts taught in American literature courses.
See More
"To call this an 'introduction' or 'guide' to its topic is accurate but modest...McDonald does not attempt to redefine texts so much as portray their coincidental nature...Highly Recommended." Choice
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