Essay about Ernest Hemingway's Lost Generation

Essay about Ernest Hemingway's Lost Generation

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Hemingway's Lost Generation

 
      Before World War I and the Great Depression, the American dream consisted of the inherent optimism about the future, and a faith in individualism. However, Americans became skeptical of these beliefs and traditions. The country lost its innocence with the war, turning idealism to cynicism resulting in the questioning of the authority and tradition which had seemed to be the American bedrock (Anderson 519). The suffering of millions of Americans brought by the decade of economic depression also changed American's outlook (Phillips 213). Furthermore, traditional beliefs were bombarded by powerful new philosophies and movements such as Marxism and psychoanalysis. An alarming message, "I have seen the future and it works," was sent from Moscow by the American writer John Reed (Anderson 521). These disillusioned expatriate American writers, residing, primarily in Paris during the 1920s and '30s, are known as the "Lost Generation"(Phillips 213). The term was coined by the American writer Gertrude Stein, one of the many "lost" writers, but was borrowed by Hemingway in his novel theSun Also Rises in 1926 (Phillips 213). It was Ernest Hemingway, the most influential of all these post-war writers, who labeled himself and his generation the "Lost Generation."

 

Hemingway was most famous for his literary style, which affected the American prose fiction for several generations. Like Puritan writers, he reduced the flamboyance of literary language to a minimum. Also, he is well remembered for adding to American fiction the Hemingway hero, which is embraced as a protagonist and a role mode. This hero is a man of action, a man of war, and a tough competitor; he had a code of honor, courage, and e...


... middle of paper ...


...s skeptical of tradition

  A    Lost innocence in war

  B.   Economic depression changed American's outlook

  C.   Changed by powerful new philosophies

II.    Hemingway was most famous for his literary style

  A.   Reduced the flamboyance of literary language

  B.   Contributed the Hemingway hero

  C.   Hero exemplified through novel

  D.   Hero code living life for the present

  E.   Hemingway left an impression on American literature

III.   Other writers responsible for literary shift to disillusionment

  A.   Sigmund Freud's psychoanalysis

  B.   William Faulkner contribute stream of consciousness

  C.   Prohibition ushered further rebellion

  D.   F. Scott Fitzgerald recorded 1920s

  E.   Sinclair Lewis captured major theme of fiction 1920s

  F.   Theodore Dreiser landmark in An American Tragedy

 

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