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Roaring '20s Literature & Film - Oakland Campus

Find resources related to the authors, film, artists, and music of the 1920s in America & Europe


Welcome to the Roaring '20s Resources Guide!  This guide is to help you find useful resources related to 1920s literature, including books, ebooks, articles, and databases.  There are also resources related to the film, music, and art of the 1920s.  Please be sure to check out the English Department Program homepage if you are interested in learning more about this area of study as well. 

1920s Writers

F. Scott Fitzgerald

According to Encyclopædia Britannica "F. Scott Fitzgerald, in full Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald    (born Sept. 24, 1896, St. Paul, Minn., U.S.—died Dec. 21, 1940, Hollywood,  Calif.), American short-story writer and novelist famous for his depictions of the Jazz Age  (the 1920s), his most brilliant novel being The Great Gatsby (1925). His private life, with his wife, Zelda, in both America and France, became almost as celebrated as his novels."

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Ezra Pound

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "Ezra Pound, in full Ezra Loomis Pound   (born Oct. 30, 1885, Hailey, Idaho, U.S.—died Nov. 1, 1972, Venice, Italy), American poet and critic, a supremely discerning and energetic entrepreneur of the arts who did more than any other single figure to advance a “modern” movement in English and American literature. Pound promoted, and also occasionally helped to shape, the work of such widely different poets and novelists as William Butler Yeats, James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway, Robert Frost, D.H. Lawrence, and T.S. Eliot. His pro-Fascist broadcasts in Italy during World War II led to his postwar arrest and confinement until 1958."

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Gertrude Stein

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "Gertrude Stein,  (born Feb. 3, 1874, Allegheny City [now in Pittsburgh], Pa., U.S.—died July 27, 1946, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France), avant-garde American writer, eccentric, and self-styled genius whose Paris home was a salon for the leading artists and writers of the period between World Wars I and II.

Stein and her brother were among the first collectors of works by the Cubists and other experimental painters of the period, such as Pablo Picasso (who painted her portrait), Henri Matisse, and Georges Braque, several of whom became her friends. At her salon they mingled with expatriate American writers whom she dubbed the “Lost Generation,” including Sherwood Anderson and Ernest Hemingway, and other visitors drawn by her literary reputation. Her literary and artistic judgments were revered, and her chance remarks could make or destroy reputations."

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Ernest Hemingway

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "Ernest Hemingway, in full Ernest Miller Hemingway   (born July 21, 1899, Cicero [now in Oak Park], Ill., U.S.—died July 2, 1961, Ketchum, Idaho), American novelist and short-story writer, awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. He was noted both for the intense masculinity of his writing and for his adventurous and widely publicized life. His succinct and lucid prose style exerted a powerful influence on American and British fiction in the 20th century."

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Langston Hughes

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "Langston Hughes, in full James Mercer Langston Hughes   (born February 1, 1902, Joplin, Missouri, U.S.—died May 22, 1967, New York City, New York), black poet and writer who became, through numerous translations, one of the foremost interpreters to the world of the black experience in the United States.

His poem 'The Negro Speaks of Rivers', written the summer after his graduation from high school in Cleveland, was published in The Crisis (1921) and brought him considerable attention. After attending Columbia University (1921–22), he explored Harlem, forming a permanent attachment to what he called the 'great dark city.' He worked as a steward on a freighter bound for Africa. Back from seafaring and sojourning in Europe, he won an Opportunity magazine poetry prize in 1925. He received the Witter Bynner Undergraduate Poetry Award in 1926."

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Edith Wharton

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "Edith Wharton, née Edith Newbold Jones   (born January 24, 1862, New York, New York, U.S.—died August 11, 1937, Saint-Brice-sous-Forêt, near Paris, France), American author best known for her stories and novels about the upper-class society into which she was born.

Wharton’s short stories, which appeared in numerous collections, demonstrate her gifts for social satire and comedy, as do the four novelettes collected in Old New York (1924). Among her later novels are Twilight Sleep (1927), Hudson River Bracketed (1929), and its sequel, The Gods Arrive (1932). In all Wharton published more than 50 books, including fiction, short stories, travel books, historical novels, and criticism."

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T.S. Eliot

According to Encyclopædia Britannica: "T.S. Eliot, in full Thomas Stearns Eliot   (born Sept. 26, 1888, St. Louis, Mo., U.S.—died Jan. 4, 1965, London, Eng.), American-English poet, playwright, literary critic, and editor, a leader of the modernist movement in poetry in such works as The Waste Land (1922) and Four Quartets (1943). Eliot exercised a strong influence on Anglo-American culture from the 1920s until late in the century. His experiments in diction, style, and versification revitalized English poetry, and in a series of critical essays he shattered old orthodoxies and erected new ones. The publication of Four Quartets led to his recognition as the greatest living English poet and man of letters, and in 1948 he was awarded both the Order of Merit and the Nobel Prize for Literature."

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