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The Civil War and Post-War Period 1850-1914. The Age of Realism – Overview Civil War Technological Advancements Railroads, telegraph, mass industrialization.

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Presentation on theme: "The Civil War and Post-War Period 1850-1914. The Age of Realism – Overview Civil War Technological Advancements Railroads, telegraph, mass industrialization."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Civil War and Post-War Period

2 The Age of Realism – Overview Civil War Technological Advancements Railroads, telegraph, mass industrialization Mass immigration Urban, Centralized Society -Gilded Age

3 North vs. South Plantations/farms  living in agriculture Opposed tariffs – needed to import raw goods Slavery – for survival Cities/towns  worked in factories/shops Supported tariffs – did not want competition

4 Tension grows… Fugitive Slave Act 1854 Kansas-Nebraska Act Breaking point  election of Lincoln South started to succeed

5 Results of the bloody war Approx. 620,000 soldiers died on both sides Approx. 500,000 wounded South was destroyed American faces reconstruction alone – Lincoln assassinated

6 Homestead Act of st Transcontinental Railroad – 1869 “Removal” of Indians Electricity trumps steam power Automobiles, telephones, movies Immigration booms – 9 million immigrants Poverty was at a high – industries – low pay Hard to get ahead End of slavery Other Key Events

7 Basics of Realism 1. Rejections of all previous models 2. Joy of individual rejected 3. Based on Direct Observation of visible world 4. Removal of intruding narrator: “Ah, gentle reader…” 5. Refusal to moralize: present facts and let reader decide 6. Opposes Idealism 7. Belief in choices/consequences

8 Basics continued 8. subject matter drawn from common people, their lives and language 9. belief that the world can be known and navigated

9 Realism/Naturalism “real life” focus on details Honest/objective Vision – war, frontier, growing cities Heavy use of symbolism American Dream – most often failure of it Darker form of realism Nature, heredity, and fate ruled a person’s destiny in life Ex. “To Build a Fire” A cruel and unforgiving environment

10 Difference between Realism/Naturalism Ethical choice Unified self Autonomy Self-creating Internally consistent Contextualized characters Appearance reveals reality Moral Character driven Reserved prose style What you do to the world Choice is determined No unified self Coercion ‘self’ is a fiction we believe Chaotic Stereotypes Appearance is reality Amoral Event driven Wild prose style What the world does to you

11 Important Terminology Dialect Colloquialism Elegy Parallelism Psychological Realism Slave Narrative Stereotype Flashback Regionalism Local Color Feminism Vernacular Determinism

12 William Dean Howells The Rise of Silas Lapham Philosophy Ordinary people Character fully developed Good over evil Silas must choose between bankruptcy and shady business dealings Returns to the poor life

13 Frank Norris Thought Howell’s lit too “strait-laced”/“narrow” Interested in greater forces on the individual (Naturalism) Model – Emile Zola Relied on psychology and sociology “attempted to dissect human behavior with as much objectivity as a scientist would dissect a frog or a cadaver” Life is cruel/harsh

14 Henry James “America’s greatest psychological novelist” Focused on motivations of characters Interested in complex social/psychological situations Settings of most novels—Europe Considered Europe’s society as more sinister than America’s Typical story: American faces problems with European society and either defeats them or is overcome by them Ex. The American

15 Stephen Crane Interested in characters who were in stressful situations Settings: battlefield, streets of a slum, western outpost, lifeboat lost at sea ironist

16 Homework Please read Stephen Crane’s An Episode of War on pages


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