Studium anglistiky na KAA UPOL

The Jazz Age (1920s).

H i s t o r i c a l  B a c k g r o u n d

- an age of bohemian rebellion in the 1920s

- characteristic by the sense of rootlessness and the lack of sense of a serious purpose

(–) WW I (1914 – 18), a flu epidemy (1918 – 19)

(–) the tendency of moving to the cities: an increased criminality here

(–) the Prohibition (1919): an increased consummation of alcohol, its illegal sale, and criminality

(+) a scientific and economic boom: the rise of new technologies, capitalism, materialism, and the new money tycoons

(+) entertainment: the rise of jazz and film entertainment

(+) an Amendment to the Constitution: a change of the woman’s position, the franchise for women

- result: F. S. Fitzgerald announces (1931) the end of the Jazz Age in 1929


L i t e r a t u r e

- a lit. growth comparable only to the Am. Renaissance

- the Am. lit. definitively ceases to be provincial

- the writers leave for Eur., and experiment

( a )  E a r l i e r  G e n e r a t i o n  ( u n t i l  1 9 1 2 ) :

- poetry: T. S. Eliot, E. Pound, H. D., M. Moore, C. Sandburg, E. L. Masters, R. Frost, W. C. Williams, and W. Stevens

- prose: G. Stein, S. Anderson, W. Cather, and S. Lewis

- drama: E. O’Neill

( b )  L a t e r  G e n e r a t i o n  ( a f t e r  1 9 1 9 ) :

- prose: W. Faulkner, J. D. Passos, E. Hemingway, F. S. Fitzgerald, and T. Wilder

- poetry: H. Crane

- drama: E. Rice, T. Wilder

( c )  W r i t e r s  o f  t h e  H a r l e m  R e n a i s s a n c e

( d )  T h e  L o s t  G e n e r a t i o n  ( W W I  –  W W I I ) :

- the name: from G. Stein’s aphorism ‘You are all a lost generation.’

- a group of survivors of the WW I: crippled young men, heavy drinkers, and expatriates in Paris prominent in the inter-war period

- the Great War = a terrible betrayal resulting in the sense of loss, disillusionment, and disenchantment


Baym, Nina, ed. The Norton Anthology of American Literature. New York: W. W. Norton, 1995.

Bercovitch, Sacvan, ed. The Cambridge History of American  Literature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995.

Cunliffe, Marcus. The Literature of the United States. London: Penguin, 1991.

Lauter, Paul, ed. The Heath Anthology of American Literature. Lexington: D. C. Heath, 1994.

McQuade, Donald, gen.ed. The Harper American Literature. New York: Harper & Collins, 1996.

Ruland, Richard, Malcolm Bradbury. Od  puritanismu k postmodernismu. Praha: Mladá fronta, 1997.

Vančura, Zdeněk, ed. Slovník spisovatelů: Spojené státy americké. Praha: Odeon, 1979.


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