SAT History

SAT History
American Literature Review
Origins of Literature--Virginia
• 17th century Virginia: Captain John Smith
“A True Relation of Virginia” (1608), “The
General Historie of Virginia, New England,
and the Summer Isles” (1624
• Robert Beverly “The History and Present
state of Virginia” (1705
• John Winthrop published a journal of the
religious foundations
• Edward Winslow wrote a diary of the first
• Increase Mather, William Bradford—
religious writers “History of Plymouth
Plantation, 1620-47” (Bradford)
• “Magnalia Christi Americana”– Cotton
Mather (Increase’s son)
Mass. 2
• Poetry, Anne Bradstreet (1st published female
writer), “The Tenth Muse Lately Sprung Up into
America” (published in England, “Several
Poems Compiled with Great Variety of Wit and
Learning” (posthumous, 1679)
• Michael Wigglesworth “The Day of Doom”
(1662)—minister who wrote about the day of
• Writers about Indian interaction: Daniel Gookin,
Benjamin Church, John Eliot (1st translation of
the Bible into an Indian language)
• Other writers; Edward Taylor, Nicholas Noyes
Great Awakening
• Jonathan Edwards “Sinners in the Hands
of An Angry God”
• George Whitfield
• Other writers of the period: Thomas
Hooker, Thomas Shepard, John Wise,
Samuel Willard, Samuel Sewall, Sarah
Kemble Knight, William Byrd
Colonial to Independence
• Benjamin Franklin, “Poor Richard’s Almanac”
“The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin”
• Thomas Paine “Common Sense” (1776), The
American Crisis (1794)
• Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson,
also his autobiography, “Notes on the State of
• Political writers: Fisher Ames, James Otis,
Patrick Henry
• Federalist Papers (Hamilton, Madison, John Jay)
• Other writers: Samuel Adams, Josiah Quincy,
John Dickinson, Joesph Galloway (the latter was
19th Century America
• First Short Stories: “The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon”
(1819-20), Washington Irving, also Irving was considered
the first American style author (Salamundi, “A History of
New York, by Diedrich Knickerbocker” (1809)
• William Cullen Bryant wrote poems in the English
romantic poetry style about American beauty
(Thanatopsis, 1817, To a Waterfowl, 1818)
• Edgar Allen Poe—short stories “The Masque of the Red
Death” “The Fall of the House of Usher”—Gothic writer
• James Fenimore Cooper: “Leatherstocking Tales” (main
character: Natty Bumppo, “The Last of the Mohicans
(1826), The Deer Slayer (1841)—Historical romance
New England Writers
• New England Brahmins (a group of writers
connected to Harvard), included James
Russell Lowell, Henry Wadsworth
Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
• Transcendentalism: Ralph Waldo Emerson,
Nature, 1836 Henry David Thoreau
“Walden” (Pond), 1853?
• Others in the Transcendentalism group:
Bronson Alcott, Margaret Fuller, George
Ripley, Orestes Brownson, Jones Very
Political Writers—mid 1800’s
William Lloyd Garrison “The Liberator”
Poet John Greenleaf Whittier
Harriet Beecher Stowe “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”
(1851-52) very sentimental
Hawthorne and Melville
• Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1837 “Stories”,
1840’s “The Scarlet Letter”—about a
woman thrown out of a Puritan community
for committing adultery
• Herman Melville (sea novels): “Moby Dick”
(whaling voyage), “Billy Budd” (duty and
compassion on a ship in time of word)—
forgotten during his life, rediscovered later
• Melville, Hawthorne, Poe are Antitranscendentalism
19th Century American Poetry
• Walt Whitman—working man, traveller,
nurse during the Civil War. “Leaves of
Grass”—free-flowing verse to depit the allinclusiveness of American democracy
• Emily Dickinson (total opposite)—very
sheltered, private, not published during her
American Realism
• Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain)—first
major writer to not be born near the East Coast
(Missouri)…”Life on the Mississippi” “Adventures
of Huckleberry Finn”—very large use of the
vernacular (speaking), characters sound real
• Contemporaries of Clemens: George W. Cable,
Thomas Nelson Paige, Joel Chandler Harris,
William Sydney Porter (O. Henry)
• Henry James—wrote about the Old World- New
World split…Americans who live/travel to Europe
American Journalists
• Most of the revolutionary writers also published
in the newspapers.
• Elijah Lovejoy (1802-1837)—dedicated to the
freedom of the press, killed by an angry mob
trying to set fire to his press in a warehouse
• Margaret Fuller (1810-1850)—First American
female foreign and war correspondent
• Mathew Brady (1823-1896)—First news
• Mark Twain
• Jacob Riis (1849-1914) “How the Other Half
• Nellie Bly (1867-1922)—investigative reporting
by example
Journalists 2
• H.L. Mencken (1880-1956) – coluimnist/critic
• Grantland Rice (1880-1954) –sportswriting
• Walter Winchell (1897-1972)—first celebrity
gossip writer
• Ernie Pyle (1900-1945)—World War II Journalist,
human side of war
• Margaret Bourke-White (1904-1971)
photography of the Great Depression and World
War II
• Alice Dunnigan (1906-1983)—anti-segregation
writer (see also Ethel Paine, 1911-1991)
• Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward—coverage of
• They were in contrast to William Randolph Hearst, who
was against news and for sensationalism
• Lincoln Steffens “Tweed Days in St. Louis” 1902,
McClure’s Magazine
• Ida Tarbell “The Rise of the Standard Oil Company”—
McClure’s, 1905-1908
• Upton Sinclair “The Jungle” about meat packing industry
(outrage over this good gave us the Pure Food and Drug
• Ray Stannard Baker: “The Right to Work”, McClure’s,
1903, coal mine conditions/scab workers
• David Graham Phillips: “The Treason of the Senate”—
Feb. 1906, Cosmopolitan, corruption in the US Senate
• Samuel Hopkins Adams: “The Great American Fraud”
(patent medicine, mediical fraud)
Naturalist Writing
• Stephen Crane “The Red Badge of
Courage” –about the Civil War, “Maggie: A
Girl of the Streets”
• Theodore Dreisser “Sister Carrie”
• Jack London “The Call of the Wild” “White
Fang”—also journalism about the SF
earthquake of 1906
Early 20th Century
• Ezra Pound (1885-1972), poet
• T.S. Eliot (1888-1965), poet “The Wasteland”
• F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940) “The Great
Gatsby”—capture mood of the 1920’s
• Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961)—death,
violence, and reality “The Sun Also Rises” “A
Farewell to Arms”—very brief writing, no extra
• William Faulkner (1897-1962)—humanity in
Mississippi, stream of consciousness writing,
“The Sound and The Fury” (1929), “As I Lay
Dying’ (1930)
Depression Era
• John Steinbeck (1902-1968)—workingclass poverty life, “The Grapes of Wrath”
“Of Mice and Men” “East of Eden”
• Henry Miller—1930’s semiautobiographical
Harlem Renaissance
• Also known as the New Negro Movement and
the Black Literary Renaissance
• Hubert Harrison, “The Father of Harlem
Radicalism” founded the Liberty League and the
Voice (first organization and first newspaper)
• 1917: “Three plays for a Negro Theatre”—
Ridgely Torrance
• 1919: Claude McKay, poetry
• James Weldon Johnson: fiction (all of these
were describing contemporary black life)
Harlem 2
• Zora Neale Hurston “Jonah’s Gourd Vine”
(1934), “Their Eyes Were Watching God”
• Nella Larsen: “Quicksand” 1928, “Passing”
• Jean Toomer – “Cane” 1923
• Walter White – “The Fire in the Flint” 1924,
“Flight” 1926
Harlem Drama and Poetry
• Langston Hughes (poetry, drama)
• Zora Neale Hurston “Color Struck”
• Countee Cullen “The Black Christ and
Other Poems” (1929)
• James Weldon Johnson, poet, “God’s