Ralph Waldo Emerson. Herman Melville. Edgar Allan Poe.
These are all renowned American writers from the previous century. While they have not been overshadowed by the up and coming writers of today, these new writers are certainly giving the veterans a run for their money.
Writers of our time include F. Scott Fitzgerald, T.S Eliot, Ezra Pound, Robert Frost, e.e cummings, William Faulkner, Theodore Dreiser, Ernest Hemingway, and the list goes on and on. These writers are fundamentally changing literature and acknowledging facets of society that previously were not brought into the limelight. Much of the new century’s writing has been focused on breaking down the “upper crust” of the social hierarchy and the money class, and going against norms.
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, published in 1925, enraptured much of America’s youth by invigorating them with a new sense of revolution.
Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, published in 1926, accurately represents our decade of the 1920s in that it is a very racy novel that discusses previously taboo topics: the main character’s impotence and his relations with a risque` woman.
In addition to novelists, poetry has made leaps and bounds from where it was a short century ago. T.S Eliot’s creation of the “stream of consciousness” in poetry has been revolutionary in the literary world. Ezra Pounds’ unique style is also
a defining quality of the 1920s. The experimentation of the work of e.e cummings is far from what has come before his time.
Essentially, literary work of our decade is marked by revolution, change, and breaking down societal norms. Many of these writers are the idols of young college students who embrace these revolutionary ideas as marks of their own impact in the world. Literature continues to change and morph into the coming decade, the 1930s.
1. Sexton, Timothy. “The Revolution in American Literature in the 1920s.” 6 February, 2008. http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/577003/the_revolution_in_american_literature.html?cat=37
2. “The Jazz Age and Louis Armstrong (The 1920s).” 2000. ThinkQuest. http://library.thinkquest.org/C005846/categories/artliter/artslit.htm