Sunday, September 14, 2014

BW38: Armchair Traveling through the 20th Century

The 20th Century, 1901 to 2000, was dominated by war and strife including The Great Depression, World War I and II,  the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and the rise and fall of the Berlin Wall. But it also was a period of great achievement with the Wright brother's first airplane flight, the production of the model-T, the roaring 20's, Babe Ruth, Golden Age of television, the first space flight, the beginning of the movie series, Star Wars and the creation of the world wide web.  

Literature wise, we had the beginnings of literary modernism influenced by poets T.E. Hulme and Ezra Pound. Their usage of plain speech, free verse and vivid imagery helped shaped modern imagery. As modernism developed, T.S. Elliot's Wasteland and James Joyce Ulysses were seen, not only as controversial, but innovative and transformed the image of modernism.  

With the advances of technology during the 20th century, books became easier to produce and gave rise to popular literature.  With the rise of popularity, we had the birth of literary criticism and awards including The Nobel Peace Prize for Literature, the Nebula, and British Fantasy Awards.  

Such a wide variety of authors including Marcel Proust, Thomas Mann, Joseph Conrad to J.R.R. Tolkein, Jean Paul Satre, Graham Greene, and Daphne Du Maurier to Philip Dick, Robert Heinlein, to Sylvia Plath and Thomas Pynchon to Orhan Pamuk, Umberto Eco and J.K. Rowling. 

Too many resources to list so check out the ever helpful Historical Novels and Goodreads Popular 20th Century Literature

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