Presentation on theme: "American Naturalism. I. Introduction 1. Origin (1) Industrialism: create a large group of very poor people; live in slums and cannot control their lives;"— Presentation transcript:
I. Introduction 1. Origin (1) Industrialism: create a large group of very poor people; live in slums and cannot control their lives; self-reliance disappeared in the fast development of economy (2) The Origin of Species (Charles Darwin, 1859, godless world, human beast, the survival of the fittest, cruel natural law correspond with cruel social realities
American Naturalism (3) Herbert Spencer: Social Darwinism (human controlled by heredity and outside social power) (4) Howell’s “smiling aspect” realism seems too genteel and even false. Thus the influence of French naturalism, Tolstoy and Turgenev came to American literature.
American Naturalism 2. Significance (1) Breaking through some forbidden area in literature (violence, death, sex etc.) (2) Greatly influencing the 20th century writers such as Hemingway and Faulkner
American Naturalism II. Stephen Crane (1871- 1900) 1. Works (1) Maggie: A Girl of the Streets (resistance of her slum life and at last suicide) (2) The Red Badge of Courage (changes of a young man’s psychological state in the civil war) (3) The Black Riders (poem collection) Crane and Emily Dickinson were two forerunners of Imagism.
American Naturalism 2. Conclusion (1) Basic motif: environment and heredity overwhelm men (2) Pioneer of naturalism
American Naturalism III. Theodore Dreiser (1871 – 1945) 1. Life (1) Indiana, German-speaking family (2) Extremely poor childhood (3) Worked as a reporter and his first book Sister Carrie was rejected many times (4) In his later life, he turned to Communism.
American Naturalism 2. Works (1) Sister Carrie (Carrie Meeber, Drouet, Hurstwood) (no control of her own life; driving blindly to catch all opportunities to make life better) (2) An American Tragedy (3) Cowperwood trilogy
American Naturalism 3. Analysis (1) Social Darwinism (man only drive by desire; only fittest can live in the society) (2) Style: formless, dull, crude (3) Powerful depiction of American social life and moving characters
American Naturalism IV. Jack London (1876 – 1916) 1. Life (1) name: John Ariffith London; born in San Francisco (2) lived in the lowest part of society in his youth (3) decided to change his life by ntellectual effort
American Naturalism (4) his works were rejected many times (5) at last succeeded and became a millionaire (6) fame and upper class life made him feel boring; committed suicide
American Naturalism 2. Works The Call of the Wild (story of a dog) White Fang (story of a wolf) The Sea Wolf Martin Eden
American Naturalism 3. Analysis (1) Social Darwinism, Neitzchean superman, socialist doctrines of Marx (2) Naturalism mingled with Romanticism (3) Limitations: formless, clumsy yet vigorous style; stiff and stereotyped characters and dialogues
American Naturalism V. O. Henry Original name: William Sidney Porter He was good at writing clever short stories and employ New York City as the background. His stories showed his sympathy with the lower class.
American Naturalism He always created the special ends described as “tears with smile” for his stories. His famous stories include “The Gift of the Magi” and “The Cop and the Athem”. His short stories are somewhat like French writer Maupassant’s.