American Culture in the 1910s (Twentieth-Century American by Mark Whalan

By Mark Whalan

With the book of this quantity, Edinburgh collage Press closes out its super winning tradition background sequence, which writes the tale of the 20th century during the cultural and highbrow activities of every decade. The 1910s have been in general ruled by way of the horrors of the 1st sleek warfare, however it additionally witnessed the flowering of modernism, the beginning of Hollywood, and the increase of innovative interpretations of tradition and society. Mark Whalan investigates this decade via achievements in fiction and poetry; paintings and images; movie and vaudeville; and track, theater, and dance. He contains distinct observation and directed case reviews of influential texts and occasions and contains chronologies and bibliographies. He considers Tarzan of the Apes, The start of a kingdom, the unconventional modernism of Gertrude Stein, the Provincetown avid gamers, and jazz music's earliest recordings. A concluding bankruptcy explores the effect of the 1st global warfare on cultural understandings of nationalism, citizenship, and propaganda.

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70 The Masses Magazine The Industrial Workers of the World supplied much of the energy for the vibrant intellectual culture of the left in the decade, but the pre-eminent forum for espousing a broadly conceived vision of radical social change was The Masses magazine. It endorsed the aesthetics as well as the politics of revolution, embracing feminism, free love, sections of the modernist movement in art, campaigns for better birth control information, antiimperialism, and a rejection of US involvement in World War I.

By the 1910s, the AFL had carved out a comfortable relationship with the Democratic Party but, with a membership of three million in 1917, it was able to wield considerable influence. The most radical organisation of the decade, however, was the Industrial Workers of the World – or the Wobblies, as they were often known. 2 Political satire in The Masses: John Sloan, ‘After the War, a Medal and Maybe a Job’, 1914. Cabinet of American Illustration, courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZC4-12974.

50 Utopian fiction was a key vehicle for her political polemic; she wrote three utopian novels in her career, with Herland representing the wittiest and most widely discussed of these since its reprinting in the 1970s. With one eye on Edward Bellamy’s socialist Utopia of 1888, Looking Backward, and one on the novels of imperial romance and jungle adventure of H. Rider Haggard and Edgar Rice Burroughs, Gilman’s novel presents the spectacle of a hidden country in the South American jungle occupied solely by women which is ‘discovered’ by three American male explorers.

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