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American Literature Introduction.

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Presentation on theme: "American Literature Introduction."— Presentation transcript:

1 American Literature Introduction

2 Historical Background
1.Early history: 1) In 1542, Christopher Columbus found the new continent called America. 2) In 1607, Captain John Smith led some Englishmen across the ocean. 3) In 1620, 102 passengers sailed on the ship Mayflower across the sea and settled on the new continent “New England”. What do you know about American early history?

3 Historical Background
2. People: native inhabitants: Indians Immigrants mostly from Europe: Spanish; Dutch; French English immigrants, Jamestown, Virginia, 1607 a group of religious people Puritans advocated religious &moral principles

4 Historical Background
3. Belief---Puritanism Puritans wanted to “purify the church” to its original state, because they thought the church was corrupted and had too many rituals a code of values a philosophy of life a point of view Calvinists took roots in the New World

5 Doctrines of Puritans taking religion as the most important thing;
living for glorifying God; believing predestination, original sin, total depravi, & limited atonement

6 American Puritanism Features of American Puritan idealist dream
they would build the new land to an Eden on earth. more practical, tougher the severe conditions struggle for survival preoccupied with business and profits

7 went into the making of American literature
American Puritanism Enduring shaping influence on literature ①Basis of American literature went into the making of American literature dreamed of living under a perfect order worked with courage hoped to build an Eden of Garden on earth faced the worst of life with optimism All literature is based on a myth – garden of Eden.

8 American Puritanism ②Contributing to the development of Symbolism: a technique, widely used Symbolism means using symbols in literary works. The symbol means something that represents or stands for abstract deep meaning. Puritans thought that all the simple objects existing in the world connoted deep meaning.

9 American Puritanism ③Influencing the style of literature: simple, fresh and direct (just as the style of the Authorized Version of Holy Bible) Without understanding of Puritanism, there can be no good understanding of American culture and literature.

10 Brief Outline of American Literature
1. Colonial period and Revolutionary period 5. After the WWII 4. The Modern period 2.Romanticism 3.The age of Realism

11 Colonial period and Revolutionary period
Time: the settlement of North America 1607 the Independence War 1783 Major topic: American Puritanism

12 Colonial period and Revolutionary period
Jonathan Edwards Benjamin Franklin

13 Romanticism Time: the Independence War 1783 possible & inevitable
the Civil War 1861 American ideal of democracy & equality, industrialization, westward expansion, foreign influences literary expansion & expression

14 Romanticism ( ) Washington Irving James Fenimore Cooper

15 Summit of Romanticism-Transcendentalism (American Renaissance)
Henry DavidThoreau Ralph Waldo Emerson

16 Late Romanticism not optimistic Nathaniel Hawthorne Herman Melville

17 Romantic Poets Emily Dickinson Walt Whitman

18 Romanticism the most controversial & the most misunderstood
Edgar Allen Poe

19 The age of Realism Time: the Civil War 1861 the First World War 1914
concern for the common-place offer an objective view

20 The Age of Realism ( ) Henry James Mark Twain

21 Naturalism Stephen Crane Theodore Dreiser

22 Conclusion Irving Franklin Cooper Emerson Hawthorne Poe Whitman Dickenson Twain James Dreiser Melville Thoreau Colonial period and Revolutionary period Early Romanticism poets Transcendentalism Late Romanticism The age of Realism

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