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Survey of American Literature

As a survey of American literature there are many influential and celebrated authors. Jack Kerouac has become a well known writer whose nontraditional style has led him to fame. In Jack Kerouac’s writings, he used a stream of consciousness, spoke chaotic and randomly, and used long run on sentences. In “Big Sur”, Kerouac uses run on sentences that reach around 9 lines long. In the conservative 1950s, his stream of consciousness approach to writing was unheard of. Kerouac’s style was revolutionary for his time. Kerouac is, “regarded as a liberator of prose and champion of idiomatic American expression” (Baym 2542).

Robert Frost was a well known, Pulitzer Prize winning author. Frost was known for his realistic style and portrayal of rural life. He used life in New England to analyze the complex social and philosophical themes present during the early twentieth century. Frost found beauty in nature and used it in his poetry. In the gist of Jack Kerouac, “The Road Not Taken” could be written as this:

I came across two roads that diverged in a yellow wood---I was sorry I could not travel both since I was only one traveler; I stood there looking down one path as far as I could to where it bent in the undergrowth and then I took a look down the other path which seemed just as fair, being all grassy and wanted wear, but really both paths had been worn about the same.

That morning both lay equally covered in leaves and I decided to keep the first for another day, and knowing how way lead on to way, I doubted if I should ever decide to come back.

As I am I telling this tale, I tell it with a sigh; somewhere a long long time ago while in the woods, two roads diverged in front of me, I decided to take the one less traveled and that re...

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... for someone, and finding a means for success. These are important lessons to be learned, which can be applied to in life.

Works Cited

Baym, Nina, Ed. “Modernism” Norton Anthology of American Literature Shorter 7th Edition. New York: Norton, 2008. 1260-1262.

Baym, Nina, Ed. “Emily Dickinson” Norton Anthology of American Literature Shorter 7th Edition. New York: Norton, 2008. 1197-1200.

Baym, Nina, Ed. “Jack Kerouac” Norton Anthology of American Literature Shorter 7th Edition. New York: Norton, 2008. 2542-1543.

Baym, Nina, Ed. “Robert Frost” Norton Anthology of American Literature Shorter 7th Edition. New York: Norton, 2008. 1951-1952.

Cahan, Abraham. “A Sweatshop Romance” Baym 1661-1670

Dickinson, Emily. “479: Because I Could Not Stop for Death” Baym 1214- 1215.

Frost, Robert. “The Road Not Taken. Baym 1960.

Kerouac, Jack. “Big Sur.” Baym 2544.
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