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Курс лекций по предмету романо-германская филология

Курс лекций по предмету романо-германская филология - Лекция, раздел Лингвистика, Д.о. Половцев ...

Д.О. Половцев

Курс лекций по предмету

История литературы страны изучаемого языка» для студентов 3-4 курса специальности

«Романо-германская филология»

Topic 1

Early American and Colonial Period to 1776

American literature begins with the orally transmitted myths, legends, tales, and lyrics (always songs) of Indian cultures. There was no written… Tribes maintained their own religions -- worshipping gods, animals, plants, or… Still, it is possible to make a few generalizations. Indian stories, for example, glow with reverence for nature as a…


Yet the earliest explorers of America were not English, Spanish, or French. The first European record of exploration in America is in a Scandinavian… The first known and sustained contact between the Americas and the rest of the… Bartolomé de las Casas is the richest source of information about the early contact between American Indians…


The Puritan definition of good writing was that which brought home a full awareness of the importance of worshipping God and of the spiritual… Scholars have long pointed out the link between Puritanism and capitalism:… Moreover, the concept of stewardship encouraged success. The Puritans interpreted all things and events as symbols…


Although many southerners were poor farmers or tradespeople living not much better than slaves, the southern literate upper class was shaped by the… William Byrd (1674-1744) Southern culture naturally revolved around the ideal of the gentleman. A Renaissance man equally good at managing a…

Topic 2


Democratic Origins and Revolutionary Writers, 1776-1820

The hard-fought American Revolution against Britain (1775-1783) was the first modern war of liberation against a colonial power. The triumph of… American books were harshly reviewed in England. Americans were painfully… Cultural revolutions, unlike military revolutions, cannot be successfully imposed but must grow from the soil of…


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Benjamin Franklin, whom the Scottish philosopher David Hume called America's… Franklin was a second-generation immigrant. His Puritan father, a chandler (candle-maker), came to Boston,…


Many writers tried but none succeeded. Timothy Dwight (1752- 1817), one of the group of writers known as the Hartford Wits, is an example. Dwight,… Not surprisingly, satirical poetry fared much better than serious verse. The… In mock epics like John Trumbull's good-humored M'Fingal (1776-82), stylized emotions and conventional turns of phrase…


Charles Brockden Brown (1771-1810) Already mentioned as the first professional American writer, Charles Brockden… Driven by poverty, Brown hastily penned four haunting novels in two years: Wieland (1798), Arthur Mervyn (1799),…


Phillis Wheatley (c. 1753-1784) Given the hardships of life in early America, it is ironic that some of the… Wheatley's poetic themes are religious, and her style, like that of Philip Freneau, is neoclassical. Among her…

Other Women Writers

Another long-forgotten novelist was Hannah Foster (1758- 1840), whose best-selling novel The Coquette (1797) was about a young women torn between… Judith Sargent Murray (1751-1820) published under a man's name to secure… Letters between women such as Mercy Otis Warren and Abigail Adams, and letters generally, are important documents of…

Topic 3


The Romantic Period, 1820-1860: Essayists and Poets

The Romantic movement, which originated in Germany but quickly spread to England, France, and beyond, reached America around the year 1820, some 20… Romantic ideas centered around art as inspiration, the spiritual and aesthetic… For all men live by truth, and stand in need of expression. In love, in art, in avarice, in politics, in labor, in…


Transcendentalism was intimately connected with Concord, a small New England village 32 kilometers west of Boston. Concord was the first inland… By the rude bridge that arched the flood Their flag to April's breeze… Concord was the first rural artist's colony, and the first place to offer a spiritual and cultural alternative to…


In an earlier Puritan age, the Boston Brahmins would have been ministers; in the 19th century, they became professors, often at Harvard. Late in… The writings of the Brahmin poets fused American and European traditions and… Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)


John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892) John Greenleaf Whittier, the most active poet of the era, had a background… Whittier's sharp images, simple constructions, and ballad- like tetrameter couplets have the simple earthy texture of…

Topic 4


The Romantic Period, 1820-1860: Fiction

W alt Whitman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, and the Transcendentalists represent the first great literary… Instead of carefully defining realistic characters through a wealth of detail,… One reason for this fictional exploration into the hidden recesses of the soul is the absence of settled, traditional…


Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) Nathaniel Hawthorne, a fifth-generation American of English descent, was born… Many of Hawthorne's stories are set in Puritan New England, and his greatest novel, The Scarlet Letter (1850), has…


Abolitionist Lydia Child (1802-1880), who greatly influenced Margaret Fuller, was a leader of this network. Her successful 1824 novel Hobomok shows… Angelina Grimké (1805-1879) and Sarah Grimké (1792-1873) were… Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902), abolitionist and women's rights activist, lived for a time in Boston, where she…

Topic 5

The Rise of Realism: 1860-1914

T he U.S. Civil War (1861-1865) between the industrial North and the agricultural, slave-owning South was a watershed in American history. The… Business boomed after the war. War production had boosted industry in the… In 1860, most Americans lived on farms or in small villages, but by 1919 half of the population was concentrated in…


Twain, Faulkner, and many other writers, particularly southerners, are indebted to frontier pre-Civil War humorists such as Johnson Hooper, George…


Bret Harte (1836-1902) is remembered as the author of adventurous stories such as "The Luck of Roaring Camp" and "The Outcasts of… Several women writers are remembered for their fine depictions of New England:… All regions of the country celebrated themselves in writing influenced by local color. Some of it included social…


Love, ambition, idealism, and temptation motivate his characters; Howells was acutely aware of the moral corruption of business tycoons during the…


Henry James once wrote that art, especially literary art, "makes life, makes interest, makes importance." James's fiction and criticism is… James is noted for his "international theme" -- that is, the complex… James's second period was experimental. He exploited new subject matters -- feminism and social reform in The…


Naturalism is essentially a literary expression of determinism. Associated with bleak, realistic depictions of lower-class life, determinism denies… The 19th-century American historian Henry Adams constructed an elaborate… Stephen Crane, the son of a clergyman, put the loss of God most succinctly:


Edgar Lee Masters (1868-1950) By the turn of the century, Chicago had become a great city, home of… Among the intriguing contemporary poets the journal printed was Edgar Lee Masters, author of the daring Spoon River…


Glasgow was from Richmond, Virginia, the old capital of the Southern Confederacy. Her realistic novels examine the transformation of the South from… Cather, another Virginian, grew up on the Nebraska prairie among pioneering…


Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Booker T. Washington, educator and the most prominent black leader of his day,… W.E.B. Du Bois (1868-1963)

Topic 6


Modernism and Experimentation: 1914-1945

  M any historians have characterized the period between the two world wars as… Nor could soldiers from rural America easily return to their roots. After experiencing the world, many now yearned for…


In literature, Gertrude Stein (1874-1946) developed an analogue to modern art. A resident of Paris and an art collector (she and her brother Leo… A Table A Table means does it not my dear it means a whole steadiness. Is it… Meaning, in Stein's work, was often subordinated to technique, just as subject was less important than shape in…


Ezra Pound was one of the most influential American poets of this century. From 1908 to 1920, he resided in London, where he associated with many… Pound furthered Imagism in letters, essays, and an anthology. In a letter to… Pound's interests and reading were universal. His adaptations and brilliant, if sometimes flawed, translations…


Edward Estlin Cummings (1894-1962) Edward Estlin Cummings, commonly known as e.e. cummings, wrote attractive,… Like Williams, Cummings also used colloquial language, sharp imagery, and words from popular culture. Like Williams,…

Topic 7




The importance of facing reality became a dominant theme in the 1920s and 1930s: Writers such as F. Scott Fitzgerald and the playwright Eugene… F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940) Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald's life resembles a fairy tale. During World War I, Fitzgerald enlisted in the U.S. Army…


Sinclair Lewis (1885-1951) Harry Sinclair Lewis was born in Sauk Centre, Minnesota, and graduated from… Lewis's other major novels include Babbitt (1922). George Babbitt is an ordinary businessman living and working in…


Among the rich variety of talent in Harlem, many visions coexisted. Carl Van Vechten's sympathetic 19267 novel of Harlem gives some idea of the… The poet Countee Cullen (1903-1946), a native of Harlem who was briefly… Jean Toomer (1894-1967)


Ironically, the most significant 20th-century regional literary movement was that of the Fugitives -- led by poet-critic- theoretician John Crowe… These three major Fugitive writers were also associated with New Criticism, an…


During the 19th century, melodramas with exemplary democratic figures and clear contrasts between good and evil had been popular. Plays about social… Eugene O'Neill (1888-1953) Eugene O'Neill is the great figure of American theater. His numerous plays combine enormous technical originality with…

Topic 8


American Poetry Since 1945: The Anti-Tradition

A shift away from an assumption that traditional forms, ideas, and history can provide meaning and continuity to human life has occurred in the… It is not hard to find historical causes for this disassociated sensibility in… American poetry has been directly influenced by mass media and electronic technology. Films, videotapes, and tape…


The previous chapter discussed the refinement, respect for nature, and profoundly conservative values of the Fugitives. These qualities grace much… The tall camels of the spirit Steer for their deserts, passing the last groves loud


Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) Sylvia Plath lived an outwardly exemplary life, attending Smith College on… Plath's storybook life crumbled when she and Hughes separated and she cared for the young children in a London…


Inspired by jazz and abstract expressionist painting, most of the experimental writers are a generation younger than Lowell. They have tended to be…

The Black Mountain School

Robert Creeley (1926- ), who writes with a terse, minimalist style, was one of the major Black Mountain poets. In "The Warning" (1955),… For love -- I would split open your head and put a candle in behind the… Love is dead in us if we forget the virtues of an amulet and quick surprise

The San Francisco School

San Francisco poets include Jack Spicer, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Robert Duncan, Phil Whalen, Lew Welch, Gary Snyder, Kenneth Rexroth, Joanne Kyger,… At its best, as seen in the work of Gary Snyder (1930- ), San Francisco poetry… On a hill snowed all but summer A land of fat summer deer, They came to camp. On their Own trails. I followed my own…

Beat Poets

Beat poetry was the most anti-establishment form of literature in the United States, but beneath its shocking words lies a love of country. The… Poems like Allen Ginsberg's Howl (1956) revolutionized traditional poetry: I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness,

The New York School

The major figures of the New York School -- John Ashbery, Frank O'Hara, and Kenneth Koch -- met while they were undergraduates at Harvard… New York City is the fine arts center of America and the birthplace of… Ashbery's fluid poems record thoughts and emotions as they wash over the mind too swiftly for direct articulation. His…

Surrealism and Existentialism

Although T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, and Ezra Pound had introduced symbolist techniques into American poetry in the 1920s, surrealism, the major… During the 1960s, many American writers -- W.S. Merwin, Robert Bly, Charles… Surrealists like Merwin tend to be epigrammatic, as in lines such as: "The gods are what has failed to become of…


Literature in the United States, as in most other countries, was long based on male standards that often overlooked women's contributions. Yet there… The second half of the 20th century has witnessed a renaissance in multiethnic… Minority poetry shares the variety and occasionally the anger of women's writing. It has flowered recently in…

Chicano/Hispanic/Latino Poetry

Chicano, or Mexican-American, poetry has a rich oral tradition in the corrido, or ballad, form. Recent works stress traditional strengths of the… Some poets write largely in Spanish, in a tradition going back to the earliest… Lost in a world of confusion Caught up in a whirl of a gringo society, Confused by the rules, Scorned by attitudes,…

Native American Poetry

Simon Ortiz (1941- ), an Acoma Pueblo, bases many of his hard-hitting poems on history, exploring the contradictions of being an indigenous American… In "Star Quilt," Roberta Hill Whiteman (1947 - ), a member of the… out of the thick ice sky

African-American Poetry

Another recently honored African-American poet is Rita Dove (1952- ), who was named poet laureate of the United States in 1993. Dove, a writer of… Michael Harper (1938- ) has similarly written poems revealing the complex… We reload our brains as the cameras, the film overexposed in the x-ray light, locked with our double door light…


This is Paradise, a mildewed book left too long in the house Bob Perelman's "Chronic Meanings" begins: The single fact is matter. Five words can say only. Black sky at night, reasonably. I am, the irrational residue... …

Topic 8

American Prose Since 1945: Realism and Experimentation

N arrative since World War II resists generalization: It is extremely various and multifaceted. It has been vitalized by international currents such… In the past, elite culture influenced popular culture through its status and… To say this is not to trivialize recent literature: Writers in the United States are asking serious questions, many of…


World War II offered prime material: Norman Mailer (The Naked and the Dead, 1948) and James Jones (From Here to Eternity, 1951) were two writers who… The 1940s saw the flourishing of a new contingent of writers, including… Robert Penn Warren (1905-1989)


Yet loneliness at the top was a dominant theme; the faceless corporate man became a cultural stereotype in Sloan Wilson's best-selling novel The Man… The 1950s actually was a decade of subtle and pervasive stress. Novels by John… The fiction of American Jewish writers Bellow, Bernard Malamud, and Isaac Bashevis Singer -- among others prominent in…


The 1960s was marked by a blurring of the line between fiction and fact, novels and reportage, that has carried through the present day. Novelist… As the 1960s evolved, literature flowed with the turbulence of the era. An… In a different direction, in drama, Edward Albee produced a series of nontraditional psychological works -- Who's…


In literature, old currents remained, but the force behind pure experimentation dwindled. New novelists like John Gardner, John Irving (The World… John Gardner (1933-1982) John Gardner, from a farming background in New York State, was the most important spokesperson for ethical values in…


There are several possible reasons for this occurrence. For one thing, all of the arts in America have been decentralized over the past generation.… The most refreshing aspects of the new regionalism are its expanse and its… Prolific novelist, story writer, poet, and essayist Joyce Carol Oates also hails from the northeastern United States.…

List of Books on American Literature

2. E.A. Poe.The Fall of the House of Usher 3. M. Twain.The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn 4. J. London.Martin Eden

Exam questions on American literature

2. Revolutionary literature. The American Enlightenment. 3. The creative work of W. Irving. 4. The creative work of J. F. Cooper.

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