A Brief History of American Literature
March 2011, Wiley-Blackwell
- A Brief History of American Literature offers students and general readers a concise and up-to-date history of the full range of American writing from its origins until the present day.
- Represents the only up-to-date concise history of American literature
- Covers fiction, poetry, drama and non-fiction, as well as looking at other forms of literature including folktales, spirituals, the detective story, the thriller and science fiction
- Considers how our understanding of American literature has changed over the past twenty years
- Offers students an abridged version of History of American Literature, a book widely considered the standard survey text
- Provides an invaluable introduction to the subject for students of American literature, American studies and all those interested in the literature and culture of the United States
1 The First Americans: American Literature During the Colonial and Revolutionary Periods.
Writing of the Colonial and Revolutionary Periods.
2 Inventing Americas: The Making of American Literature 1800–1865.
Making a Nation.
The Making of American Myths.
The Making of American Selves.
The Making of Many Americas.
The Making of an American Fiction and Poetry.
3 Reconstructing the Past, Reimagining the Future: The Development of American Literature 1865–1900.
Rebuilding a Nation.
The Development of Literary Regionalisms.
The Development of Literary Realism and Naturalism.
The Development of Women's Writing.
The Development of Many Americas.
4 Making It New: The Emergence of Modern American Literature 1900–1945.
Changing National Identities.
Between Victorianism and Modernism.
The Inventions of Modernism.
Traditionalism, Politics, and Prophecy.
Community and Identity.
Mass Culture and the Writer.
5 Negotiating the American Century: American Literature since 1945.
Towards a Transnational Nation.
Formalists and Confessionals.
Public and Private Histories.
Beats, Prophets, and Aesthetes.
The Art and Politics of Race.
Realism and Its Discontents.
Language and Genre.
Creating New Americas.
—Andrew Hook, University of Glasgow
"Drawing upon a lifetime of reading and research in this field, and covering a huge range of material from the Bay Psalm Book to Walter Mosley, Richard Gray's Literature of the United States offers an excellent survey that holds the American cultural tradition in a compelling, synoptic whole."
—Paul Giles, University of Sydney
"Richard Gray's A Brief History of American Literature is an extraordinary achievement. Gray offers us a fascinating and nuanced overview of United States writing, employing literary sensibility to examine a range of periods and genres."
—Susan Castillo, King's College, London