Modern English and American literature



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Горішна Л.В. Сучасна англійська та американська література. -Х.:Акад. ВВ МВС України, 2011. - 185с.

Навчальний посібник "Сучасна англійська та американська література" для курсантів та студентів IV курсу гуманітарного факультету за напрямком підготовки "філологія, переклад". Описання творчого шляху, викладання змісту багатьох творів художньої літератури сприятимуть глибокому розумінню естетичних, моральних і художніх принципів найбільш відомих письменників і поетів XX - початку XXI століття країн, мову яких вивчається.

Автори:Л.В.Горішна, канд. філол. наук, доцент кафедри фонетики та граматики (Академія внутрішніх військ МВС України)Рецензенти:В.В. Місеньова, канд. філол. наук, доцент кафедри міжмовної підготовки (Харківський національний університет ім. В.Н.Каразіна), Т.О.Биценко, канд. філол. наук, доцент кафедри філології, перекладу та мовної комунікації (Академія внутрішніх військ МВС України)


PREFACE. MAJOR LITERARY GENRES LITERATURE1. THE EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY LITERATURE (1901-1939). MODERNISMWoolfJoyceHerbert LawrenceQuestions and Tasks2.THE TWENTIETH CENTURY LITERATURE. NEW PERIOD. PROSE AND DRAMAGalsworthy.S. EliotBernard ShawGeorge WellsSomerset MaughamAldingtonJoseph CroninGreenePercy SnowGoldingMurdochRobert Fowles Questions and Tasks3. ANGRY YOUNG MEN WRITERS. THE GENERATION OF GENERAL DISCONTENTOsborneAmisBraineQuestions and Tasks4. A FEW MORE GLIMPSES OF POST-WAR LITERATUREQuestions and TasksLITERATURE5. AMERICAN LITERATURE OF THE FIRST HALF AND THE MIDDLE OF THE XX-TH CENTURY. NEW WAVESDreiserFrostAndersonScott FitzgeraldFaulknerHemingwayPenn WarrenQuestions and Tasks 6. AMERICAN LITERATURE OF THE SECOND HALF OF THE XX-TH CENTURYSteinbeckAlbert MichenerShawJonesOConnorUpdikeTylerCrichtonQuestions and Tasks



«Modern English and American Literature» is a course for students and cadets studying English and American literature at intermediate or advanced level of English. It is designed to motivate and involve students in effective studying process. The book can serve as a basis for effective literature lessons at which the students might be expected to understand, learn and appreciate the beauties of great English and American writers, the makers of song and story of their presents a survey of the most significant aspects of the literary process in Great Britain and the United States of America, its historical, social and economic background of the XX-th and the beginning of the XXI century.stress has been laid on the life of the various authors, their relationship and their work to the times in which they lived to stimulate class discussions and involve students in effective work on the literary matters.

«Modern English and American Literature» consists of seven units. Each unit contains a variety of questions focused on assisting comprehension and guiding students towards their own understanding of the authors and their is designed for the students and cadets to get information about English literature, broaden their outlook, develop a high level of target language competence, enjoy the works of English writes and love literature!


literary genrescomes directly from oral traditions found in numerous cultures of the world. Sometimes there were storytellings or storysinging contests, as in the classical age of Greek letters. These early stories were about figures or events familiar to particular groups. New characters with new characteristics appeared. A work of fiction usually possesses characters, plot, setting, point of view, theme, and, sometimes, symbols. Fiction is a shared experience. The writer introduces the readers into his or her created world. William Faulkner, the American writer and a Nobel Laureate, said that the primary job of any writer is to tell you a story, a story out of human experience - I mean by that, universal, mutual experience, the anguishes and troubles and griefs of the human heart, which is universal, without regard to race or time or condition. He wants to tell you something which has seemed to him so true, so moving, either comic or tragic, that its worth repeating. The most held opinion is that fiction is created from a mixture of fact and fancy. Telling a good story is considered to be a primary function of fiction, but telling a truthful story is equally commonly divided into three major genres: poetry, prose, and drama. Each major genre can in turn be divided into lyric, concrete, dramatic, narrative, and epic.can be divided into fiction (novels, novellas and short stories) and nonfiction (biography, autobiography, letters, essays, and reports).is a long fictional story written in prose. It is one of the most popular forms of literature.subject matter of novels covers the whole range of human experience and imagination. Some novels portray true-to-life characters and events. Writers of such realistic novels try to represent life as it is. In contrast to realistic novels, romantic novels portray idealized versions of life. Some novels explore purely imaginary worlds. For example, science-fiction novels may describe events that take place in the future or on other planets. Other popular kinds of novels include detective novels and mysteries, whose suspenseful plots fascinate readers.novels point out evils that exist in society and challenge the reader to seek social or political reforms. Novels may also provide knowledge about unfamiliar subjects or give new insights into familiar ones.novel has four basic features that together distinguish it from other kinds of literature. First, a novel is a narrative - that is, a story presented by a teller. It thus differs from a drama, which presents a story through the speech and actions of characters on a stage., novels are longer than short stories, fairy tales, and most other types of narratives. Novels vary greatly in length, but most exceed 60,000 words. Because of their length, novels can cover a longer period and include more characters than can most other kinds of narratives., a novel is written in prose rather than verse. This feature distinguishes novels from narrative poems. Fourth, novels are works of fiction. They differ from histories, biographies, and other long prose narratives that tell about real events and people. Novelists sometimes base their stories on actual events or the lives of real people. But these authors also make up incidents and characters. Therefore, all novels are partly, if not entirely, imaginary. The basic features of the novel make it a uniquely flexible form of literature. Novelists can arrange incidents, describe places, and represent characters in an almost limitless variety of ways. They also may narrate their stories from different points of view. In some novels, for example, one of the characters may tell the story. In others, the events may be described from the viewpoint of a person outside of the story. Some novelists change the point of view from one section of a story to another. Novelists also vary their treatment of time. They may devote hundreds of pages to the description of the events of a single day, or they may cover many years within a few paragraphs.

Poetrythe oldest kind of literature known to humanity, poetry in its earliest stages was told or sung, but during its long and continuing evolution it has become part of the written tradition and is been use for several purposes. Foremost among the many uses of poetry has been its ability as lyric, narrative, and epic to pay homage to the gods and to recount the history of specific groups of people.European and American poets have been most influenced by Greek culture, in which the writers were known as poets, a title that carried both responsibility and praise. Greek literature consisted in large measure of plays that were written in poetry, a convention of the time. Roman poets adopted most of the rules of the Greeks, later revived during the Renaissance. Beginning with Geoffrey Chaucer, poetry in England flowered and spread throughout the English-speaking world and far beyond. Poetic forms are: verse, poem, song, ode, sonnet, ballad, elegy, parody, epigram, etc.what is poetry? According to William Wordsworth and Samuel Coleridge, the major role of poetry was to stand in opposition to science. Coleridge wrote: poetry is not the proper antithesis to prose, but to science. Poetry is opposed to science. A great and influential man of writing of the Romantic period wrote that Poetry begins where matter of fact or science ceases... . The American poetess of the 19th century Emily Dickinson alludes nearly to the same thing:clothe the fiery thought simple words succeeds,still the craft of genius is mask a king in often full of ideas, too, and sometimes poems can be powerful experiences of the mind, but most poems are primarily about how people feel rather than how people think. Poetry can be the voice of our feelings.prose and poetry have much in common and a number of poets also write prose fiction, nevertheless, commonly accepted differences between the two genres are that poetry is generally written in meter, thus creating rhythm, and prose is not; rhyme is a characteristic feature of poetry (though not required) which prose doesnt have. Poetry distills, compresses and refines knowledge through selective use of language, while prose is considered ordinary language. Poets are binding themselves in the chains of traditional poetic forms and then creating interaction between different elements of poetic technique. But nothing about poetry is as important as the way it makes us feel with the help of imagination, symbols, and invention.poetry is freed from the old rules, evolves from the confinement of rigid structure and sometimes content. This is what we now know as free verse - the kind of poetry which was fired by a new kind of poet, epitomized by the great American poet Walt Whitman, poetry which relies heavily on imagery.employ various strategies and elements of poetic technique to frame their vision of human experience in verse: theme, diction, tone, imagery, symbolism, simile and metaphor, personification and apostrophe, mete, rhythm and rhyme, sound, structure, and form.can be divided into serious drama, tragedy, comic drama, melodrama, and farce.differs from other forms of literature in that it demands a stage and performances. It can be enjoyed by both spectators and readers. But the fact is that most plays are written to be produced, and must be performed. The word drama comes from the Greek meaning a thing done. The playwright supplies dialogues for the characters to speak and stage directions that give information about costumes, lighting, scenery, properties, the setting, music, sound effects, and the characters movements and ways of speaking. From its beginnings, drama, like other forms of literature, was meant to tell the story of humankind in conflict with the world. A play is human action or human experience dramatized for stage production. Poetic elements of technique and strategies in a play must be made visible. Through plot, a playwright imitates movements of existence, adjusting the rhythm to fit the mode of presentation, whether that mode is comedy or farce, tragedy or melodrama, tragicomedy or pantomime.



In Europe, the effect of World War I, and of the ghastly casualties was powerful and lasting. There was a grim contrast between the rousing patriotic speeches of the leaders at home and the slaughter in the trenches of France.devastation of World War I brought about an end to the sense of optimism that had characterized the years immediately preceding the war - nineteenth-century conviction that progress must forever continue, which can be found in the works of G.B. Shaw and H.G. Wells. Many people were left with the feeling of uncertainty, disjointedness, and disillusionment. No longer trusting ideas and values of the world out of which the war had developed, people sought to find new ideas that were more applicable to twentieth-century life. The quest for new ideas extended into the world of literature, and a major literary movement known as Modernism was born.writing this was the period called highbrow and precious, the period of new writing meant to be understood only by a very small minority of the people, the cultured few, and that could not be enjoyed by everybody who could read. The works of T.S. Eliot (1888-1965), James Joyce (1882-1941) and Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) were often difficult and obscure. Young creative writers felt themselves in danger of being overwhelmed by mass media: radio, films, and of course television meant for ordinary people. So they had to keep a long-way-off and do something very different. They decided that real literature, not meant for ordinary reading public, could afford to be difficult, could even glory in its difficulty.effected J.R.R. Tolkien (1893-1973). He personally came under the shadow of war and felt fully its oppression when he was caught in youth by 1914, a hideous experience as he called it himself, and then involved in no less hideous an experience in 1939 and the following years.Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on January 3, 1893 in Bloemfontein, South Africa. After serving in the First World War, he embarked upon a distinguished as one of the finest philologists in the world. He was a professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford, a fellow of Pembroke College, and a fellow of Merton College. He is beloved throughout the world as the creator of Middle-earth and the author of such classic works as The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. He died on September 2, 1973, at the age of 81.trilogy The Lord of the Rings (The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, The Return of the Ring) appeared between 1936 and 1949. It is a chronicle of the Great War of the Ring which occurred in the Third Age of Middle-earth. It is greatly built on myth and symbols. Myth and fairy-story must, as all art, reflect and contain in solution elements of moral and religious truth, but not explicit, not in the known form of primary real world, said Tolkien.were, of course, other writers whose work was less affected by the war and the disillusionment that it bred. Joseph Conrad (1857-1924), E.M. Forster (1879-1970), and Catherine Mansfield (1888-1923), whose literary careers as writers of fiction began well before the war, exercised much influence on later writers - Conrad by his deep concern with mans inner nature, Forster and Mansfield by their subtle treatment of personal relationships. In the stories collected in The Garden Party (1922) Mansfield uses psychological revelation and skillful description of social gatherings to portray young people trying to break through superficiality upper-middle class life. Some of these stories achieve the level of poetry in their impressionistic recreation of scenes and moments. Mansfield recorded her thoughts during her last years in a writers Journal, which her husband, the English critic edited and issued in 1927, after her death.poets, William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) progressed from a dreamy kind of romanticism in the 1890s to highly disciplined, intellectual verse in the 1920s and 1930s, while A.E. Housman (1859-1936) assured his fame with a small number of exquisitely polished lyrics. Poets such as T.S. Eliot (1888-1965) and William Butler Yeats (1865) experimented with language and rhythms. Influenced by the innovators of the late Victorian Age, by the poetry of the French Symbolists, by the metaphysical poetry of the seventeenth century, and by the attempts of the Imagists to capture moments in pure, compressed images, Eliot, Yeats and others wrote an entirely new kind of poetry, intellectually challenging, suggestive, ironic, realistic and often disquieting. Their poems, along with those of Gerald Manley Hopkins, published posthumously in 1918, inspired later poets such as W.H. Auden (1907-1973), C.S. Lewis (1893-1963), and Dylan Thomas (1914-1953) to create technically precise poetry rich in nuance and ideas.important novelist, contemporary with Joyce and Virginia Woolf but markedly different in his approach, was D.H. Lawrence (1885-1930).century writers such as Virginia Woolf and James Joyce have tried not merely to describe how a character might think; they have also attempted to present a record of his consciousness - that is, the stream of the characters thoughts as he is thinking them. They explored the psychic ills of contemporary society through the inner experience of individuals and their relationships. Influenced by developments in modern psychology, writers began using the stream-of-consciousness technique, attempting to recreate the natural flow of a characters thoughts. The stream-of-consciousness technique involves the presentation of a series of thoughts, memories, and insights, connected only by a characters natural associations. In her novel Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf, who is regarded as one of the principal exponents of Modernism, records the consciousness of Clarissa Dalloway as she thinks about a party she is giving: But to go deeper, beneath what people said (and these judgments, how superficial, how fragmentary they are!) in her own mind now, what did it mean to her, this thing she called life? Oh, it was very queer. Here was So-and-so in South Kensington; someone up in Bayswater; and someone else, say, in Mayfair. And she felt continuously a sense of their existence; and she felt a waste; and she felt what a pity; and she felt if only they could be brought together; so she did it. And it was an offering; to combine, to create, but to whom? Notice that the author does not try to be especially clear. The sentences do not follow one another logically. Instead, she follows the mind wherever it goes, seeking to give an impression of spontaneity rather than order.Modernists experimented with wide variety of new approaches and techniques, producing a remarkably diverse body of literature. During the years between the two world wars, writers in both the United States and Europe explored new literary territories. The landmark stream-of-consciousness novel is Ulysses, published in 1922 by the Irish writer James Joyce. A number of American novelists soon adopted the technique, most notably William Faulkner in the Sound and the Fury, John Passos in U.S.A., Katherine Anne Porter in short stories, Eugene ONeill in Strange Interlude.postwar disenchantment made many writers settle in Paris, where they were influenced by Gertrude Stein. The publicist and the writer who coined the phrase Lost generation to describe those who were disillusioned by the First World War, Stein lived in Paris from 1902 until her death in 1946. Steins home attracted many major authors, including Sherwood Anderson, F.Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. They are the best known of the expatriates. But they are by no means the only ones. Ezra Pound spent most of his adult life in England, France and Italy. T.S.Eliot, born in St.Louis, went to Europe in 1914 and did not return to the United States until 1932.of the lost generation saw very little in their civilization to praise or even to accept. Archibald MacLeish, an expatriate from 1923 to 1928, wrote several volumes of verse expressing the chaos and hopelessness of those years., the Modernists shared a common sense. They sought to capture the essence of modern life in the form and content of their work. To reflect the fragmentation of the modern world, the Modernists constructed their works out of fragments, omitting the expositions, transitions, interrelations, resolutions, summaries, and explanations used in traditional literature. In poetry they abandoned traditional forms in favour of free verse. The themes of their works were usually implied, rather than directly stated, creating a sense of uncertainty and forcing readers to draw their own conclusions. The Modernists generally believed that there is no external order governing human existence and that, as a result, life is often splintered and disjointed.

Virginia Woolf

1882-1941Woolf was a major British novelist, critic, and essayist. She was a leading figure in the literary movement called Modernism.Woolf was born in London in 1882. Her father was Leslie Stephen, one of the most important Victorian philosophers, critics, and men of letters, and the editor of the Dictionary of National Biography. Her father had a large library and Virginia availed herself of these resources throughout the childhood and adolescence, and her fathers friends helped her receive the equivalent of university training. Her fathers first wife was the daughter of the novelist William Makepeace Thackeray. her fathers death in 1904, Virginia moved to Bloomsbury, the London district that houses the British Museum. She and her sister Vanessa gathered around them the circle of artists and intellectuals which has become known as the Bloomsbury Group, a remarkable intellectual circle which included economists, historians, critics, and novelists. In 1912 she married the journalist and editor Leonard Woolf. Together they founded one of the most distinguished publishing houses the Hogarth Press, which published works of noted modern writers. Her early novels were The Voyage Out (1915) and Night and Day (1919). The works which made her one of the founders of literary modernism are Mrs. Dalloway (1925), in which she studies the world of characters tragically affected by World War I, To the Lighthouse (1927), and The Waves (1931), which is a poetic statement rather than a novel. Plot and action in her novels become secondary matters and are replaced at the forefront by a lyrical treatment of human consciousness.novels by Virginia Woolf are Jacobs Room (1922), The Years (1937), Between the Acts (1941), collections of stories Kew Gardens (1919), The Mark on the Wall (1919), Monday or Tuesday (1922).has been a critic and an essayist too. The better essays in the two volumes of The Common Reader, and A Room of Ones Own, a short defense of womens rights, have lost none of their freshness.central theme is the intangible shading of feeling and thought that momentarily divides or unites our souls. Look within and life, it seems, is very far from being like this. Examine for a moment an ordinary mind on an ordinary day. The mind receives myriad impressions - trivial, fantastic, evanescent, or engraved with the sharpest of steel... life is a luminous halo, a semitransparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end. Is it not the task of the novelist to convey this varying, this unknown and uncircumscribed spirit...?Woolf stated that the fiction writers central concern is with character, the mysteries of the human personality.Woolf denied the necessity of the plastic development of plots and characters. To approach the experience of life, to reveal the inner lives of her characters and to criticize the social system of the day she often employed the stream-of-consciousness technique in her novels. Although she did not invent this technique, she refined and brightened by her own wit and observation the procedure by which the characters of a novel reveal themselves through their unspoken thoughts. Her method was to assemble in language of great poetic force tiny fragments of perception. She tried, as far as possible, to catch each moment as it passed rather than to thrust her characters into the contrivances of a plot.Woolf had been subject to nervous breakdowns and depression since childhood. When World War II came, she became terrified of relapsing into madness, and at the age of fifty-nine in March of 1941, during a depression following the publication of her last novel The Years, she committed suicide by drowning herself in the Ouse River. After her death, it became fashionable to emphasize her faults as a writer - her inability to create exciting plots or to draw strong, distinctive characters - at the expense of her virtues. Today she is again discovered as a rare spirit who, in her own delicate fashion has enlarged our knowledge of the human heart.

James Joyce

1882-1941Joyce was born in Dublin on February 2, 1882, the eldest of the ten surviving children. His family was relatively well-to-do. His father sent Joyce at the early age of six to the finest preparatory school in Ireland, the Jesuit-run Clongowes Wood College. Soon his father John Joyce lost his previous job and was unable to keep the boy at Clongowes Wood. The boy was removed from that school and sent for two years to a mediocre Christian Brothers school in Dublin. Later he was admitted without fees to Belvedere College where he showed himself as a successful schoolboy. Years of unholy mysteries of sex which he experienced at Dublins red-light district and the sacred mysteries of his training at Belvedere were followed by some months of piety, fasting, and prayer. Joyce seriously contemplated entering the priesthood.1898 Joyce graduated from Belvedere and entered University College, Dublin, the Catholic university which competed with the more prestigious Protestant institution, Trinity College. His former life satisfaction was replaced now by academic success and recognition. His literary idol was Henrik Ibsen whose Work was thought to be scandalous at the turn of the century. Joyce attacked the narrowness and provincialism of the Irish intellectuals and nationalists and looked toward Europe as a scene of greater vision and freedom. In 1902 Joyce took his degree and was ready for search for his own vision and freedom abroad. He travelled to Paris to begin studying medicine but quickly dropped out for want of money. He lingered in Paris for a while writing reviews for the Dublin Daily Express and teaching English to private pupils. His mother was seriously ill and Joyce came back home. In 1904, after his mothers death, he took a post teaching at a school in a Dublin suburb.June of 1904, Joyce met and fell in love with a young woman, Nora Barnacle, tall, pretty, but nearly uneducated and having no interest in literature. She was not the girl one would have expected to become the consort of a great master of modern letters, but her understanding and uncritical acceptance of him was perhaps just what Joyce needed. In September 1904 the couple set out for the Continent. Since then Joyce had Joyce had made only two brief trips to Ireland. After brief stays in Poland and in Rome, Joyce took up language teaching at the Berlitz School in Trieste, where he and Nora lived until 1915, and where their two children were born. Not until 1931 were Joyce and Nora legally married. Joyce was a brilliant linguist who for many years earned his living by teaching English to foreigners. He knew Latin, Italian, French, German, and numerous other tongues.first recorded poem was written in 1891. The collection of poetry entitled Chamber Music was published in London in 1907. His second work was an autobiographical brief sketch called A Portrait of the Artist, written in 1904. He also began the collection of short stories. The original manuscript contained twelve stories. They were mostly written in late 1904 through 1905. By 1907 the manuscript was completed by the addition of three more stories and the novella The Dead. But it was not until 1914 that a collection of stories Dubliners was offered to the public. 1914 marked a watershed in Joyce career. He got recognition of poet Ezra Pound too. Joyce had begun refining A Portrait of the Artist into the evocative and dramatic form of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. He showed the first chapter to the editor Harriet Shaw Weaver who arranged for it serial publication in his literary magazine The Egoist during 1914-1915 before its book publication in 1916. The book is a remarkable technical achievement, nearly perfect in the economy of its form and the objectivity of its treatment of the most personal of subjects. Portrait principally recounts Joyces homesick misery at Clongowes. Using symbolism, epiphanies, and distinct style, Joyce conveyed the inner life of his protagonist in his progress from early childhood to the assumption of his mature destiny.1920 Joyce settled in Paris. He spent his first two years completing and revising Ulysses, the greatest work of Joyce which he began writing still in 1914. The book was published by the Shakespeare Press in 1922. Despite its obvious seriousness, the uncompromising language and vision of Ulysses made it impossible to publish in Britain and in America. The first American publication appeared only in a book that is impossible to describe adequately in brief. It covers one day (June 16, 1904) in the life of three Dubliners, a day in which nothing very much happens, which ends as inconclusively as it began - and yet it is a novel of amazing breadth and scope, an encyclopedia portrait of modern life. On one level, it conveys the flickering, fugitive thoughts of its characters, the hideous domestic details of their lives, dissecting them with a surgical precision hitherto unknown in fiction. On another level it presents Leopold and Molly Bloom and Stephen Dedalus as the modern symbolic equivalents of Odysseus, Penelope, and Telemachus in Homers epic. The book does not only give the details of the life of the city of Dublin - it is the whole journey of man from birth to grave. In his novel Joyce attempts to embody the whole significance of all human history, the meaning of the family, of manhood and womanhood, war, politics, and human achievement of every sort. Words are Joyces obsession, his delight, the source of his power. So wonderfully are words used by the author that the whole world of Dublin springs up out of their sounds, colours, reverberations, and linkage with each other. A complex network of parallels constantly relates and contrasts the characters to their Homeric counterparts. Joyce uses the story of the wanderings of the classical hero Ulysses as a kind of mythical shorthand to underscore the eternal significance of the contemporary episodes in his work. The ultimate triumph of Ulysses goes beyond its psychological naturalism, its mystic and symbolic structure, and its stylistic experimentation. It deals with the elemental drama of Blooms search for a son and Stephens search for a father, and it reflects the spiritual profundity that underlies all of Joyces artistry. Ulysses is James Joyces masterpiece.spent the next seventeen years, from 1922 to 1939, writing his last novel, Finnegans Wake - Joyce called it his monster - a book that cannot be read, but can only be studied. If in Ulysses he tried to universalize his three Dubliners through their symbolic relations with Greek characters, in Finnegans Wake he attempted a universal history. The title refers to an Irish tavern song about Tim Finnegan, who breaks his skull in a drunken fall and is miraculously resurrected at his own wake. The novel deals with the theme of death and resurrection and with the broader theme of the cyclical character of human history, in which civilizations evolve, collapse, and are reborn. These themes govern the structure of the novel, which in itself is cyclical. It begins in mid-sentence and ends in the middle of the same sentence - as though the novel, like life itself, were continuous with no beginning and no end. The language is English, but with misspellings that call up puns in a dozen other tongues. Word-play, puns, the use of sounds to enforce meaning (onomatopoeia) - these are just a suggestion of the allusive and musical uses of language achieved in this book. It is a book in which Joyce strove to give voice to the eternal dream of humanity, taking place on a single never-ending night of dreams. Within its own terms, the book is great, but it was destined never to be popular with the readers, and the one which can be fully understood only by the handful of specialists willing to devote their lives and energy to mastering its complexities.again to Switzerland by the Nazi occupation of France, Joyce died on January 13, 1941 at the age of fifty-eight, nearly blind and almost worn out by a combination of hard work and hard living. By the time of his death, Joyce had become a legend and remains today the archetypal modern writer, against whom all others are measured.

David Herbert Lawrence

1885-1930Herbert Lawrence explores the world of love between men and women and the cultural, historical and natural forces that bear on the fulfillment of human potential. A brilliant, imaginative, and emotional writer, Lawrence portrays characters sympathetically, as victims of an inhibiting society, and nature as symbolic of what is vital and nurturing in life..H. Lawrence, an English novelist, short story writer, poet, essayist, and playwright, was born on 11 September in a poor family of a coalminer in the village of Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, in central England. He was the fourth child of a miner and an ex-schoolteacher. In 1898 at the age of thirteen he entered Nottingham High School winning a scholarship. Leaving school at sixteen he became a clerk for a short time. In 1906 he entered the training department of the Nottingham University College and after graduating from it was appointed as a teacher to an elementary school in Croydon, near London, where he began writing poems and short stories. Like that of many other writers his literary career started with writing highly charged love poetry. In 1913 appeared Lawrences first book of poems Love Poems and Others.conflict between his mother, who had been a schoolteacher and had written poetry, and his father, a crude and uneducated miner, made Lawrence feel keenly the tension between the gentler world of imagination and art and the world of physical labour. The tempestuous relationship with his violent father and passionate bonding with his refined, socially ambitious mother shaped much of his later work. In his writing Lawrence often contrasted the physical side of love with the passionless, intellectualized side. While his mother was clearly an early inspiration, he also wrote about his father with gentles, as in the semiautobiographical novel Sons and Lovers (1913). His mother kept her delicate son from strenuous stint in the mines. But her close intimacy with her son produced a powerful bond that warped his post adolescent development and delayed his emergence into full personal and artistic freedom.1911 his first novel The White Peacock came out, and Lawrence decided to devote himself to literature.1912 Lawrence met Frieda von Richthofen, the young wife of one of Lawrences Nottingham professors and mother of three children. The two fell in love instantly, left for Germany together and began a nomadic life together. Their relationship was intensely intimate but often troubled, and Lawrence based much of his fiction on this lifelong love. The couple was married in July 1914, when Friedas divorce became final. This was a stormy marriage from the first and inspired Lawrences volume of poems Look! We Have Come Through! (1917). During World War I Lawrence and his wife lived in London and at Greatham. Disillusioned with England and its narrow-minded rejection of his works with the pictures of sexual creativity Lawrence and his wife Frieda von Richthofen left the country for good in 1919, thereafter returning to England only for brief periods. Sea and Sardinia (1921) was a quick, joyous, unconventional record of a journey.second novel was the Tresspasser (1912), then the novel Sons and Lovers (1913), his first major work and semi-autobiographical account of his early life and the ambiguous relations he shared with his parents, which established him as a mature writer.the end of 1914 he published a book of short stories called The Prussian Officer, and in 1915 - the novel The Rainbow. Lawrence often suffered from censorship and public condemnation. The Rainbow was banned in England as obscene, and even his literary friends did not appreciate this strikingly original work. In 1916 appeared a travel book Twilight in Italy. The Lost Girl (1920) was an attempt to give the public what he believed it wanted. It won him the James Tait Memorial Prize and was followed by Aarons Rod (1922). Women in Love, which had been completed in 1917 but rejected by the London publishers was issued late in 1920. Women in Love is the deeper and more bitter than The Rainbow. It was a product of World War I, a period that strengthened Lawrences nightmare vision of humanity on the brink of collective suicide. Then followed Cangaroo (1923), a novel written and set in Australia, the result of his extensive travelling. The Plumed Serpent came out in 1926, and Lady Chatterleys Lover, his last novel was written in Italy and published privately in 1928. Lady Chatterleys Lover was not legally published in its entirety until 1959. This booked was banned for its sexual explicitness, strong language, and detailed descriptions of sexual relationship and was not published in its complete form in England and the United States until over thirty years later. In this novel Lawrence tells the story of a love affair between an aristocratic lady and a game keeper in order to show the importance of the physical as well as the emotional side of human relationships. It contains explicit descriptions of the sexual awakening of its heroine. More permissive times have lessened the shock of its erotic realism. This book did much to expand the range of published material, for courts ruled that it is art and therefore justified in depicting love explicitly. Today it is regarded as a frank and vivid portrayal of a relationship based on passion and is respected as one of the twentieth centurys greatest literary works.s nonfiction, fiction, and poetry all are characterized by strong physical descriptions and by sensitivity to the world of nature. One volume of poems is titled Birds, Beasts, and Flowers (1923); other collections include Tortoises (1921), Pansies (1929), and Nettles (1930).health and disillusionment with England caused Lawrence to travel the world, seeking a hospitable climate. The Lawrences visited and lived in Italy, Sicily, Ceylon, Australia, Mexico, New Mexico, and the South Pacific. Many of this localities and cultures provided Lawrence with inspiration for books. He had contracted tuberculosis while living in primitive conditions in Mexico.spent the winter 1929-1930 at Bandol and in February went to a sanatorium in France. Death finally claimed him at Vence on the French Riviera. He died at the age of forty-four of tuberculosis on March 1, 1930. His ashes were eventually taken to his ranch above Taos, New Mexico.Lawrence is classed among English modernists, though he did not deny the necessity of the plastic development of characters and the plot. What places him among modernists is Freuds conception of an individuality and the theory of subconsciousness which he supported and propagated in his novels.with social life, Lawrence sought escape in the world of nature. He firmly believed that the evils of an unjust and corrupt society could be mitigated if men and women found warmth and happiness in love. The sufferings brought upon lovers by a cruel social law or, more often, by the clash of their conflicting - wills, by the hatred and revolt that sometimes go hand in hand with love are the main subjects of Lawrences novels.World War I the philosophical outlook of most English writers has been deeply influenced by Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalysis, as developed by Freud, is the apotheosis of the individual, the extreme of intellectual anarchy. It affected the works of D. H. Lawrence very much.was also the first writer who openly wrote about marriage and relationship of sexes. He intruded into the sphere of intimate life, breaking the prejudices of the time. However, realistic picturing of the life is characteristic of Lawrences novels: truthful pictures of the life of miners in Sons and Lovers; the description of St.Philips school in The Rainbow, beautiful and fascinating descriptions of nature in The White Peacock; atmosphere of family life in The Lost Girl.and Lovers. Lawrences novel Sons and Lovers is largely autobiographical. It principally chronicles the war for Lawrence's soul between his mother and Jessie Chambers, Lawrences first love. The main hero Paul Morel, a poet and painter, like the author himself, has been brought up in a working class home. Thus the book, set in a coalmining community similar to D.H.Lawrences birthplace, is based on his own experience and is a semi-autobiographical account of his early home life and the ambiguous relations with his parents - an obsession and the claustrophobic relationship with his mother and hatred he felt for his father. Life at Eastwood offers nothing to a vital, unambitious man like Pauls father, except the pit and the pub. To his wife, with her intelligence and her longing for refinement, it offers only the chapel and the hope of getting up into the middle class - through her children if not through the disappointing husband. This is Paul Morels heritage, and the neurotic refusal of life engendered in him is the direct result of his parents failure. And the parents failure is the direct result of the pressures of an inhuman system.s mother has one passion in her life - a passion for her sons; first for the eldest, then the second. Paul is urged into life by the reciprocal love of his mother. But when he comes to manhood, he fails to fall in love because his mother is the strongest power in his life. Lawrence shows the feelings and passion of Paul's mother. First it was motherly love to her little son. She cared about him, defended him from the cruelty of her husband and from hard work in the mine. She wants him to become a painter, she is so glad when he is successful in study and work. But she is very jealous and she demands the same love to herself from him. Meanwhile Paul comes into contact with a sensitive girl Miriam. She is timid and self-conscious because she loves him, and with a prophetic insight fears that he will go beyond her limitations. Paul is angry with her emotional intensity because it already begins to constitute a claim on him. Strongly drawn to Miriam, he cannot and will not give himself to her; he wants to be safe. Miriam fights with Pauls mother for the possession of his soul. But mother gradually proves to be the stronger of the two, because of the tie of .their blood. Paul realizes that he cannot really love Miriam, but he does not know why. He does not clearly recognize the power of his mother. It is true that he returns to his mother, but he thinks that he is still faithful to Miriam, that she still holds him in the depths of her soul. Miriam wants a completely committed love with faithfulness, tenderness and understanding - qualities that Paul cannot give. Yet her possession of his soul comes to matter less and less. His mother wins the fight for his soul. His mother is the chief thing to him, the only supreme thing. He said about Miriam to his mother, No, Mother - I really don't love her. I talk to her, but I want to come home to you. ...I could let another woman - but not her. Shed leave me no room, not a bit of a room -. And immediately he hated Miriam bitterly. Another woman comes into his life. Clara comes to work at the factory where Paul is employed, and her husband also works there. Clara is different from Miriam. She is independent, emancipated and experienced. The development of their relations is wholly without any tender glow. But his mother is not displeased; she thinks that he is getting away from Miriam, and that he is growing up.Paul is severely hurt by Claras husband and pneumonia follows, his mother nurses him, and he again returns safely to his mothers care. But his safety is clouded by his mothers illness; it is a fatal cancer. Paul is prostrated with grief. Clara leaves Paul because she realizes that her husband has more dignity than Paul.last effort with Miriam fails. They meet again, with all the old tension. She suggests marriage, and in a scene of tortured, enigmatic confusion Paul rejects it. He says: You love me so much, you want to put me in your pocket. And I should die there, smothered. Lawrences exposition of the novel closes with these words: He is left in the end naked of everything, with him drift towards death.s work has been the subject of violent argument. On the one hand, it was praised to the skies, on the other, it was reviled as immoral. The truth of the matter is that Lawrence was one of the first among English writers to be absolutely outspoken on questions of love and relations between men and women while the element of social protest in Sons and Lovers is not strong.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Comment on Modernism as a major literary movement. Name the main representatives of Modernism. Explain modernists ideas and slogans.

. Briefly tell Virginia Woolfs biography. What well-known novels did she write? Comment on Virginia Woolfs central themes in her writings. Can we call her a fighter of womens rights? Why?

. What writings is James Joyce famous for? Speak on the subject of Ulysses. Name all the main characters of the book. Explain: Why nowadays James Joyce remains the archetypal modern writer.

. Tell about D.H. Lawrences lifetime and literary work. Comment on the critics words: Novels which explore the interrelation between the individual self, the social self and nature. Name and classify the relations between the members of the family according to their quality and intensity (Sons and Lovers).



1867-1933Galsworthy is one of the outstanding representatives among the English authors of the close of the XIX century and the beginning of the XX century. He was an extremely intellectual man, trained for the Bar.Galsworthy was born in a well-to-do family in Surrey. He got his first education at home. At the age of fourteen he was sent to Harrow School, a very old and famous public school for boys. At Harrow Galsworthy distinguished himself as an excellent pupil. After Harrow he studied law at Oxford; but he did not find his studies in law exciting though he received an honours degree in law in 1889 and was admitted to the Bar. But very soon he gave up law entirely for literature. His decision was influenced greatly by Ada Galsworthy, his wife.1899 Galsworthy published his first novel Jocelyn. Afterwards, at frequent intervals he wrote plays, novels and essays.first notable work was The Island of Pharisees (1904) where he attacked the stagnation of thought in the English privileged classes, with their reject of any emotion and their preference for a dull, settled way of life. Five following works entitled The Country House (1907), Fraternity (1909), The Patrician (1911), The Dark Flower (1913) and The Freelands (1915) show a similar attitude. Here the author criticizes country squires, the aristocracy and artists, and professes his deep sympathy towards strong passions, sincerity and true love.he gained popularity only after the publication of The Man of Property (1906) - the first part of The Forsyte Saga. Galsworthy had not intended to write a sequel to The Man of Property. But speaking about the Forsyte family he said: I never meant to go on with them, but after 1918 they began to liven up again, and the whole thing then came on with a rush - six books and four interludes full of them.first three books of The Forsyte Saga for which John Galsworthy was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1932 - The Man of Property, In Chancery and To Let show us Soames Forsyte in his dealings with his elders and his contemporaries. The dominant theme of this trilogy is the struggle between the possession instinct which would reduce even human beings to the level of property, and the instinct for beauty and freedom which eternally eludes possession.three novels - The White Monkey, The Silver Spoon and Swan Song were united under the general title A Modern Comedy (1928) - in which the younger generation of the Forsytes are depicted against the background of the post-war England. The action is centered round Soames daughter Fleur. The third trilogy is called End of the Chapter (1931-1933) and includes Maid in Waiting, Flowering Wilderness and Over the River.took Galsworthy 22 years to accomplish this monumental work. It is both a family chronicle and the history of the English bourgeois society during fifty years of gradual decay. We see World War I altering the aspect of many things, the workers movement threatening to overthrow the old economic system, uncertainty growing in morals as well as economics.was also a great playwright of his time. In his plays he is a social reformer, but too often he is only an observer, trying to mete out equal justice for both sides. His best plays such as Strife (1909), The Silver Box (1909), Justice (1910), which is concerned with the evils of the prison system, and The Loyalties (1922), by many regarded as Galsworthys best play, attack the most pressing social issues of the day. His Strife treats of industrial warfare in tin-plate works on the borders of England and Wales. The central theme is that of class distinction. In the play The Silver Box he shows the difference between the rich and the poor in the interpretation of the law. In the tragedy Justice the barbarity of the English Penal Code is revealed; we see that justice is kinder to the rich man than to his poorer brother. His plays, like his novels, are often didactic; that is to say, they are directed not towards entertainment but towards enlightening the minds of their audiences, towards guiding them to the solution of social problems and to the clearing up of social abuses. They are full of ideas and thoughts, they are intellectually not only a novelist and a dramatist, but also a short story writer and an essayist. His short stories give a most complete, and critical picture of English bourgeois society in the first part of the XX century. It is in his short stories that Galsworthy deals with the most vital problems of the day - he condemns the imperialist war, exposes capitalism that brings suffering and unemployment to the people, showing his sympathy for the so-called little men and reflecting their hard life and tragic fate, though his characters are mostly members of the upper middle-class, with which he was wholly a great master of exciting plots, realistic depiction of life and characters, of critical attitude towards national prejudices. He tried to revive the realistic traditions of his predecessors - the writers belonging to the brilliant school of English novelists. Though Galsworthys criticism is not as sharp and acute as that of Dickens and Thackeray, he is justly considered to be one of the greatest realists of his time. The novels and plays of Galsworthy give a most complete picture of English bourgeois society in the XX century. A bourgeois himself Galsworthy nevertheless clearly sees the decline of his class and truthfully portrays this in his works. To him it is not man who is wicked-but society that is wrong. He believes in man as all humanists do. Yet one cannot help seeing the limitations of Galsworthys realism. His criticism of the bourgeoisie is ethical and esthetic only. He aims to improve his class, but in no case does he want it to lose its ruling position. The descriptive talent of the author, the richness of his style, sincerity and keen sense of beauty put Galsworthy on the level with the most prominent writers of world literature.Forsyte SagaMan of Property. At the beginning of the novel we see the Forsyte family in full plumage. All the Forsytes gather at the house of old Jolyon to celebrate the engagement of Miss June Forsyte, old Jolyons granddaughter, to Mr. Philip Bosinney. Old Jolyon is the head of the family, eighty years of age with his white hair, his domelike forehead and an immense white moustache, he holds himself extremely upright and seems master of perennial youth. He and his five brothers and four sisters (James, Timothy, Nickolas, Rodger and others) represent the first generation of the Forsytes. All of them are rich businessmen, heads of various firms and companies - big landowners, salesmen, lawyers, publishers. With distrust and uneasiness they watch Junes fiancé - a young architect without any fortune. In their opinion Jolyon ought never to have allowed the engagement. Bosinney seems to be an impractical fellow with no sense of property, while the Forsytes consider property to be a sacred thing, the object of worship and respect. Their aim of life is to enlarge their wealth by all means. They are clinging to any kind of property - money, wives, reputation.most typical man of property is Soames Forsyte, a representative of the second generation of the Forsytes. Soames sacred sense of property even extends to works of art, human feelings and family relations.married Irene, 20-year old daughter of a poor professor, a woman who has never loved him, Soames treats her as though she were his property. Out of his other property, out of all the things he had collected, his silver, his pictures, his houses, his investments, he got a secret and intimate feeling; out of her he got none. In this house of his there was writing on every wall. His business-like temperament protested against a mysterious warning that she was not made for him. He married this woman, conquered her, made her his own, and it seemed to him contrary to the most fundamental of all laws, the law of possession, that he could do no more than own her body - if he indeed could do that, which he was beginning to get his beautiful wife out of London, away from opportunities of meeting people, Soames decides to build a house in the country. He asks Bosinney to design the house, because he thinks that Bosinney will be easy to deal with in money matters. Irene falls in love with the young architect, and Soames, driven by jealousy, brings a suit against Bosinney for having exceeded the sum of money which had been fixed for the construction of the house. On the day of the trial Bosinney meets with a tragic death. Being passionately in love with Irene and depressed by the hopeless state of affairs he wanders aimlessly in the foggy streets of London and is run over by an omnibus. Irene leaves Soames. But she is forced to return to him though not for a long time. The new house remains empty and deserted.

The Man of Property represents a typical bourgeois who is a slave of property, which is to him not only money, houses and land, but also his wife, the works of art and the talent of artists whose works he buys. Soames believes that the souls and thoughts, ideas and love, the inspiration of a genius, the kindness and sympathy of a warm heart are all to be bought for their value in money. In his conversation with Philip Bosinney young Jolyon, a painter, the son of old Jolyon says: We are, of course, all of us the slaves of property, and I admit that it's a question of degree; but what I call a Forsyte is a man who is decidedly more or less a slave of property. He knows a good thing, he knows a safe thing, and his grip on property - it doesnt matter whether it be wives, houses, money, reputation - is his hallmark.Galsworthy depicts a concrete family of men of property - the Forsytes - he shows us at the same time the life of the class which rules the country, the upper-middle class. Every Forsyte feels great pleasure speaking about money matters. If he sees anything, he immediately states the value of it.individualism, egoism, snobbery, an ability never to give oneself away, contempt for everything foreign, a sense of property and money-worship - these are the most characteristic features of the Forsytes. The collision between the sense of property and money-worship, on the one hand, and true love and a keen sense of beauty, on the other, is the main theme of the novel. Irene symbolizes beauty, Bossiney - art. But the above mentioned characters are not as vivid and full-blooded as those of the Forsytes. They are created to contrast the Forsyte clan and its evil qualities.second and the third novels of the trilogy - In Chancery and To Let tell about the marriage of Soames with a French girl Annet who is 20 years his junior. She doesn't love him, but she is practical. This marriage produces an heir - the daughter Fleur. Irene marries young Jolyon and they have a son - John. They represent the third generation of the Forsytes. The young people fall in love with each other, but Irene can not bear the idea of her son being in love with the daughter of the man whom she hates. They send John off to America to separate two young loving souls. Robin Hill house is sold. Hence, the title To Let. This is the end of the Forsytes efflorescence.Modern Comedy.second trilogy opens with The White Monkey. Galsworthy shows habits, customs, views and psychology of the so-called lost generation. The typical figure of this generation is Wilfred Desert, a poet, who falls in love with Fleur, but she refuses him and he leaves England and spends many years in the East. Fleur still longs for John. But she is hot a girl to waste time and she decided that it was better to have whatever life held for her and she soon marries Michael Mont. Fleur is the very image of colour and vitality. She is sly and cunning, acute and clever, she is self-possessed and self-restrained, she has a ready answer for everything and everybody. She could keep on the tracks she was on. She is overflowing with health and life. She is a marvel of energy. The title of the novel is allegorical. Once Soames bought a picture with a monkey eating an orange. Her eyes express the tragedy of a human soul - it seems to the monkey that there is something hidden in the orange she is trying to peel off, she tries to find it but in vain, and she is unhappy and angry. When Michael Mont saw the picture he said that it should be placed in the British Museum under the title Civilization as it is.meaning of the second novel The Silver Spoon is disclosed in the phrase concerning Fleur, Wilfred Desert, Fleurs son Kit and others. All of them were born with the silver spoon in the mouth. Since their birthday they had everything they needed. There was only one thing for them to do - to puzzle over something, to seek what else they could have. Again the author pictures the aristocratic society allegorically, in the image of an old toothless woman sucking a silver spoon. She fears to let the spoon out of her mouth and at the same time she is no longer able to keep it in her mouth.of the Chapterthird trilogy End of the Chapter shows the decay of an aristocratic family. We meet many young people of the new generation, among them Dinny Cherrel, who is opposed to empty society. She has the aim in her life - to save the family from ruin. Dinny is a remarkable young woman with lots of qualities (plenty of pluck, singular power of acumen, natural spring of wit not devoid of humour). But the greatest testimony to her character lies in her transparent honesty. It is out of her character to tell lies; she likes a straight deal in everything. She is as straight as a die. Dinny is a marvel of energy. Being in the know that her brothers reputation is aspersed she sets her mind on pulling useful strings to vindicate Huberts honour without thinking of herself.of relations between men and women Dinny is of the opinion that affection should come first. The giving of her heart would be no rushing affair. As her old Scotch nurse used to say Dinny knows on how many toes a pussy-cat goes. No wonder she receives her due of respect and admiration on the part of everybody. No wonder that Hallorsen took a toss over her and Alan Fasburgh fell for her charms on sight.again meet Wilfred Desert who returned from the East. Wilfred Desert is brightly portrayed by the author. He is a tall young man of about thirty four, with a disdainful look about his mouth, with daring and compelling face, whose eyes were his best point. He comes from an old family and has a streak of the wanderer in him. His face gave the impression of spiritual struggle and disharmony, of dreaming, suffering and discovery. Though on his own admission he got over the war there were in him nerves not yet mended up. Wilfred is acutely unhappy from deep inward disharmony, as though a good angel and a bad one were for ever seeking to fire each other out. Wilfred is suffering from a deep spiritual discontent. He is at odds with himself according to Dinny. He has sort of enmity against people and life and his not shared love for Fleur started him as a rolling stone. He went to seek sanctuary in the East. The greatest testimony to his character is that he could see through any falsity, for it was alien to his nature.his return to England Wilfred Desert finds himself in complete isolation because being in the East he recanted at the pistol point and took mohammedism under the threat of life. He felt sorry that he stifled his first instinct which was to say: shoot and be damned. It was not cowardice. It was just better scorn that men can waste each others life for beliefs that seemed to him equally futile. Dinny and Wilfred love each other. But although Dinny is ready to fight for him and help him he again leaves England and parishes in the East.

T.S. Eliot

1888-1965the time when he was regarded as Americas most eminent living poet, T.S. Eliot announced that he was an Anglo-Catholic in religion, a royalist in politics, and a classicist in literature. T.S. Eliots family was rooted in New England, yet he was born into a prominent family in St. Louis, Missouri, where his father was the chancellor of Washington University. Eliots childhood awareness of his native city would show itself in his poetry, but only after he had moved far away from St. Louis. During his years as an undergraduate at Harvard, Eliot published a number of poems in The Harvard Advocate, the school literary magazine. In 1910 he earned his masters degree in philosophy. In the same year he completed his first important poem The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. This poem was published in the magazine Poetry. He graduated from Harvard and went on to postgraduate work at the Sorbonne in Paris.before the outbreak of World War I, Eliot took up residence in London, the city that would become his home for the rest of his life. There he worked for a time in a bank, suffered a nervous breakdown, married an emotionally troubled Englishwoman, and finally took up the business of literature. He became active as a publisher in the outstanding firm of Faber & Faber, and, on his own, edited The Criterion, a literary magazine. As a critic, he was responsible for reviving interest in many neglected poets, notably the seventeenth-century poet John Donne. 1927, Eliot gave up his American citizenship and became a subject of the King of England. But residence in an adopted country does not necessarily change the philosophy or the style of a poet.before he decided to live abroad permanently, Eliot had developed a taste for classical literature. He was as familiar with European and Eastern writings as he was with the masterpieces of English. But the most crucial influence upon his early work came from the late-nineteenth-century French poets who, as a group, came to be known as the Symbolists. They saw poetry as an art of recreating states of mind and feeling, as opposed to reporting or confessing them. These beliefs became the basis of Eliots own poetic methods. When people complained that this poetic method of suggestion was complex and difficult to understand, Eliot retorted that poetry had to be complex to express the complexities of modern life. Eliot and other American poets also believed that, divorced from British antecedents, they would once and for all bring the peculiar rhythms of their native speech into the mainstream of world literature. Eliot and these other poets are often referred to as Modernists.had an austere view of poetic creativity; he disagreed with those who regarded a poem as a means of self-expression, as a source of comfort, or as a kind of spiritual pep talk. Practicing what he preached, Eliot startled his contemporaries in 1917 with the poems Portrait of a Lady, Prufrock and Other Observations. These early poems were dramatic studies of man's spiritual and emotional poverty in a barren world. Then, in 1922, with the editorial advice and encouragement of Ezra Pound, Eliot published The Waste Land, a long work which would become the most significant poem of the early twentieth century. The poem was so influential that the word wasteland entered common usage from Eliots work. The word suggests a civilization that is spiritually empty and paralyzed by indecision and anxiety. The Waste Land proved that it was possible to write an epic poem of classical scope in the space of 434 lines. The poem contrasts the spiritual bankruptcy that Eliot saw as the dominant force in modern Europe with the values and unity that governed the past. Critics pored over the poems complex structure and its dense network of allusions to world literature, Oriental religion, and anthropology. The impact of The Waste Land on other writers, critics, and the public was enormous, and it is regarded as one of the finest literary works ever written.few years after The Waste Land appeared Eliot published a series of notes identifying many of his key references. In 1925, Eliot published a kind of lyrical post-script to The Waste Land called The Hollow Men, which predicted in its somber conclusion that the world would not end with a bang but with a whimper. In The Hollow Men, Eliot repeats and expands some of the themes of his longer poem and arrives at that point of despair beyond which lie but two alternatives: renewal or annihilation. Critics, surveying Eliot's career, said that, after the spiritual dead-end of The Hollow Men, Eliot chose hope over despair and faith over the world-weary cynicism that marked his early years. But there is much evidence in his later poems to indicate that, for Eliot, hope and faith were not conscious choices. Instead, they were the consequences of a submission. After he became a British citizen and the member of the Church of England, radical changes in the focus of Eliots writing, the exploration of religious themes became evident in his later poems Ash Wednesday (1930), with its deeply religious spiritual explorations, and Four Quartets, which contains the philosophical conclusions of a lifetime (though always tentative). These poems suggest that Eliot felt that religious belief could be a means of healing the wounds inflicted on a person by spiritually bankrupt society he depicted in The Waste Land. In such poetic dramas as Murder in the Cathedral (1935), The Cocktail Party (1950), and The Confidential Clerk (1954), Pound affirmed a positive religious conviction that is sustaining.spent the remainder of his poetic career in an extended meditation upon the limits of individual will and the limitless power of faith in the presence of grace.winter evening settles down The morning comes to consciousnesssmell of steaks in passageways. Of faint stale smells of beero'clock From the sawdust-trampled streetburnt-out ends of smoky days With all its muddy feet that pressnow a gusty shower wraps To early coffee-stands.grimy scrapswithered leaves about your feet With the other masqueradesnewspapers from vacant lots; That time resumes,showers beat One thinks of all the handsbroken blinds and chimney-pots, That are raising dingy shadesat the corner of the street In a thousand furnished rooms.lonely cab-horse steams and stamps.then the lighting of the lamps.tossed a blanket from the bed, His soul stretched tight across the skies lay upon your back, and waited; That fade behind a city block,dozed, and watched the night revealing Or trampled by insistent feetthousand sordid images At four and five and six o'clock;which your soul was constituted; And short square fingers stuffing pipes,flickered against the ceiling. And evening newspapers, and eyeswhen all the world came back Assured of certain certainties,the light crept up between the shutters, The conscience of a blackened streetyou heard the sparrows in the gutters, Impatient to assume the world.had such a vision of the street I am moved by fancies that are curledthe street hardly understands; Around these images, and cling:along the bed's edge, where The notion of some infinitely gentle curled the papers from your hair, Infinitely suffering things.clasped the yellow soles of feet Wipe your hands across your mouth, and laugh;the palms of both soiled hands. The worlds revolve like ancient womenfuel in vacant lots.for his work as a trail-blazing pioneer of modern poetry, Eliot was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1948. In the decades that followed, he came frequently to the United States to lecture and to read his poems, sometimes to very large audiences.Stearns Eliots poetry received more critical acclaim than that of any other American poet of his time. Several of T.S. Eliots plays had a successful run in London and New York.Pound wrote a few final words on the death of his old friend, ending with this passage: Am I to write about the poet Thomas Stearns Eliot? Or my friend the Possum? Let him rest in peace, I can only repeat, but with the urgency of fifty years ago: READ HIM.

George Bernard Shaw

1856-1950Shaw was born in Dublin in a family of a civil servant. He was fifteen when he left school to become an office boy at a firm of land agents in Dublin. Being fond of the theatre he visited it from his earliest years and acquired so profound a knowledge of Shakespeare that he knew many of the plays by heart.the age of nineteen Shaw moved to England to spend his remaining 75 years there. In London B. Shaw had no intention of continuing office work and he spent a lot of time educating himself. He used to say: Though almost penniless I had a magnificent library in Bloomsbury, a priceless picture gallery in Trafalgar Square and another at Hampton Court without any servants to look after or rent to pay. I had the brains to use them. 1879 and 1883 he wrote five long novels, such as Immaturity, Irrational Knot and Love Among the Artists in which he tackled the problems of marriage and showed himself as the fighter for family relations built on spiritual understanding free from social and class prejudices. Other works are An Unsocial Socialist and Cashel Byrons Profession.the early eighties Shaw was deeply impressed by the increasing unemployment in London, being not far from poverty himself. At the British Museum reading room he read Karl Marx in a French version and From that hour I became a man with some business in the world. In 1884 B. Shaw joined the Fabian Society which based their activity on believing in slow development of different social reforms instead of revolutionary measures. He became one of the most famous public speakers, who was feared by every opponent for his sharp tongue and clear argument.this time Shaw was offered a job in the Pall Mall Gazette and in a short time he became one of the most popular critics of music, art and drama in London. He published several books of criticism on music and theatre, among them London Music, Music in London, Our Theatres in the Nineties. Nevertheless Shaws attention was turned to the drama as a means of expressing the ideas crowding his mind. The long list of his plays opens with the cycle of Plays Unpleasant which marked the beginning of a new period in the history of English drama. This cycle includes Widowers Houses (1892), Philanderer (1893) and Mrs.Warrens Profession (1894). He protests against the evils of the society and the low position of a woman. He exposes such seamy sides of bourgeois society as poverty, sexual exploitation, marriage as a business deal, prostitution.s Houses. The first performance of B. Shaws play Widowers Houses in 1892 was quite a sensation. Shaw was attacked both by the public and the critics who called him a cynic.theme was declared by Shaw to be middleclass respectability fattening on the poverty of the slums as flies fatten on filth. The play was a ruthless exposure of the darker sides of English life.respectable English gentleman Sartorius has made his fortune by renting tenement houses in the slum area. The houses are in a terrible state, but he refuses to spend any money on repairs. During the rest on the Rein he acquaints his daughter Blanche with a young doctor Harry Trench. They fall in love with each other and decide to marry. They return to England where Harry Trench pays a visit to Mr. Sartorius house and is shocked at finding out that Sartoriuss wealth has come from slum property. Trench offers Blanche to live on his income which he believes is derived in an honest way. However, Sartorius proves to Trench that the wealth of the latter comes from the same source, because the slums are located on the land that belongs to Trench and his aunt. The play reveals that the respectability of the rich rests on the money squeezed out of suffering and starving people.the start was made. He started by criticizing bourgeois morals and corruption. A year later he wrote the Philanderer and a few months later another satire Mrs. Warrens Profession, all the three being plays unpleasant, because he was telling the truth to the bourgeois readers and spectators.. Warrens Profession. Mrs. Warren is a proprietress of several brothels in Belgium, Vienne, Budapest and she profits greatly from them. She considers her business quite honest and noble. She is able to give her daughter Vivie a decent education at private school and then at the university. Her daughter does not suspect what the source of her mothers income is. When she becomes aware of this her first impulse was to protest against it. It seemed that Bernard Shaws intention was to portray a new character who due to her energy would try to change things in the bourgeois society. But it didnt happen. Her mother told the story of life of three sisters: one of them, got poisoned by lead at the factory and died, another married a worker and kept the house and three children for 16 shillings a week till her husband deteriorated through heavy drinking. Was it worthy to keep straight for the sake of it? she asks her daughter. Then she told her daughter about her work as a scullery maid until she and her sister Lizz opened a brothel. It was a first-rate brothel and the girls were treated miles better than she was treated working as a scullery maid. Little by little her daughter begins to take mothers side. You were right if taken from practical point of view, she said. And from all others, was Mrs. Warrens answer. She said that marriage did not settle the question, so the best way was to chase a bachelor, marry him and live on his money. Prostitution is tackled by Shaw as the social evil and he severely criticizes it. No wonder that the play did not see the stage until 1902.first cycle was followed by another one which he called now Plays Pleasant. There appeared Arms and the Man (The Chocolate Soldier), The Man of Destiny, and Candida.title of the cycle is rather ironical: through the amusing situations and witty scenes with sparkling dialogues B. Shaw continues his criticism of bourgeois morals and ideals. He attacks militarism and war, their senselessness and cruelty, ridicules war and the so-called glories of war (Arms and the Man, 1894). This is a story of a man who gives up military service, the war and the arms entirely for a womans society. Edward VII, then a would-be king, Prince of Wales said that the author of the play must be a fool. Shaw dethroned Napoleon in The Man of Destiny. The main attention of the author is paid to the problem of morality. He calls upon the people to unmask, to free themselves from prejudices and illusions. Then followed Candida, the comic play You Never Can Tell, and the equally comic Androcles and the Lion. The third cycle of plays of B. Shaw Three Plays for the Puritans includes: The Devils Disciple (1897), Caesar and Cleopatra (1898), Captain Brassbounds Conversion (1899). The title of the third cycle has a double meaning: on the one hand the plays turn against English Puritanism, bigotry and hypocrisy, on the other hand they are directed against the decadent drama. He contrasts his plays for puritans to those where the main themes tackled are love and marriage. Shaw explains that the greatest evil is to replace intellectual life by love intrigues.1900 Shaw had established his reputation as a playwright. He wrote one play after another as well as books of criticism and pamphlets on socialism. B. Shaws plays were not merely plays of dramatic action. Their tension was created by the struggle of ideas; they always set out to solve some social, moral or philosophical problems. In his more than fifty plays, in their numerous prefaces, Shaw has treated almost every public and social theme of the century.made a revolution in the theatre of his time. Shaws plays deal with various problems: politics, science, religion, education and economics. And in solving them he criticizes the vices of capitalist society laying bare its gross injustice and showing its inhumanity.. Shaw also revived the practice of including a long preface and sometimes a sequel in the published version, explaining what the play was about and what he actually meant. He gained a reputation as a man of brilliant wit, making frequent and effective use of the paradox, which can be found in dramatic structure, characters and style. Shaw uses them not merely for the sake of witty play of words, but to turn inside out the moral and social truths of the bourgeois world.World War I Shaw wrote long and daring articles, protesting against the imperialist governments and their war policy. In his article Common Sense about the War he said: No doubt the heroic remedy for this tragic misunderstanding is that both armies should shoot their officers and go home to gather the harvest in the villages and make a revolution in the towns.was greatly interested in Russian culture. He highly appreciated and admired L. Tolstoy, with whom he corresponded, and also Chekhov and Gorky.. Shaw was at was at the peak of his fame (1925) when he received the International Nobel Prize for Literature.spite of the fact that he called himself a socialist, Shaw was at times incredibly contemptuous of the working class and thought it incapable of ever playing a significant role in winning socialism. He never fully understood Marxism. Shaw saw and felt the class contradictions of the new imperialist era very sharp and intense and in his analysis of the political and economic basis of imperialism he went much farther than his predecessors, the mid-nineteenth century writers. Shaw's aim was to show real life, not to write plays for entertainment with a happy end. He opposed the so called well-made play trend - which was very popular among the playwrights of his time.list of Shaws plays is very vast; to his most popular plays also belong Pygmalion (1912), The Apple Cart, Heartbreak House (1917), Major Barbara, Saint Joan.House was written during World War I. Shaw himself highly appreciated the play and in the preface to it he disclosed the symbolic meaning of the title. In the subtitle he called the play fantasia in the Russian manner on the English theme. The dramatic pattern of the play is Chekhovian; a group of people in a country house, the collision of their conflicting ideas and their impact on each other.sympathized with these people for their culture, sincerity, disgust for business, and at the same time accused them of idleness, of hatred for politics, of being helpless wasters of their inheritance. The author indicated the futility of the life of bourgeois intelligentsia.. The main hero of this play, Professor Henry Higgins, is presented rather ironically, as a kind of modern Pygmalion. (Pygmalion, a celebrated sculptor of mythological antiquity and King of Cyprus, fell in love with a statue of Galatea which he had made of ivory, and at his prayer Aphrodite had given life to it. Pygmalion is often accepted as a symbol of the power to breathe life and soul into inanimate things).actual fact the satire implied in the play is directed against Professor Henry Sweet, a well-known English philologist and phonetician. There are touches of Sweets character in the play, but Henry Higgins is not a portrait of Sweet.Higgins meets Eliza one stormy night selling flowers to a crowd under the portico of St. Pauls Cathedral. The professor, struck by her remarkably pure Cockney pronunciation is making notes of her words with a view of studying them at home. A gentleman seems particularly interested in Higgins, and the conversation, which springs up between them reveals that he is Colonel Pickering, a student of Indian dialects. He and Higgins, it appears, have been interested in each other's work for years. Higgins points out that he can perfect the girl's shocking pronunciation which keeps her selling flowers in the street and prevents her from getting a respectable position as a saleslady in a flower shop.remark has made a deep impression on Eliza and the very next day she visits the professor to take lessons in pronunciation, at a price she considers fully sufficient of one shilling an hour. Finding Eliza's offer very interesting professor Higgins and Colonel Pickering make a bet, that in six months Higgins will teach Eliza the language of Shakespeare and Milton and pass her off as a duchess at an ambassadors party. If Higgins succeeded Pickering would pay the expenses of the taken into Higgins house where during several months she is being taught to speak correct English. While staying at Higgins home Eliza gets accustomed to Professor Higgins and Colonel Pickering. Higgins is not married and lives alone with his servants and his elderly housekeeper. He often finds Eliza amusing and Eliza, grateful for the education he is giving her, makes herself useful to him wherever she can. In order to prove his experiment Higgins dresses Eliza in beautiful clothes and takes her to the Ambassadors Garden Party where she meets the cream of society. Everybody takes her for a grand lady.wins his bet. But he has forgotten that a flower-girl is a human being with mind and heart. He looks upon her only as a thing. He does not care what is to become of her when he has finished his instruction. He says, When Ive done with her, we can throw her back into the gutter, and then it will be her own business again. Higgins is not unkind by nature and perhaps he has even grown fond of Eliza without knowing it; but what is an ignorant flower-girl to a gentleman of means and wide education... Eliza teaches him how wrong he is, giving him a lesson of feeling. The lesson costs her some pain because not only has she got accustomed to Higgins, but has also begun to love him.. Shaws play Pygmalion is a satire on higher society. Here aristocrats are opposed to a simple girl. At the very beginning of this comedy Shaw stresses the difference between the speech of educated people and that of the ignorant people (the Cockney speech).his preface to Pygmalion Shaw wrote: The English have no respect for their language, and will not teach their children to speak it. They cannot spell it because they have nothing to spell with but an old foreign alphabet of which only the consonants and not all of them - have any agreed speech value. Consequently no man can teach himself what it should sound like from reading; and it is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman despise him. The reformer we need most today is an energetic enthusiast: that is why I have made such a one the hero of a popular play.

Herbert George Wells

1866-1946.G. Wells was born at Bromley, Kent, in a lower middle-class family. His father was a professional cricket player and his mother was a house keeper in a large country house. He studied at Midhurst Grammar School, combining his studying with the work at a drapers, then as a chemists apprentice. Being a bright boy he won a scholarship of the Royal College of Science in London. After receiving his Bachelor of Science degree with honours at London University Wells took to teaching as a private tutor in biology, and even wrote a text-book on biology.1893 he turned to journalism and literature contributing to the Saturday Review and the Pall Mall Gazette.his whole literary heritage Wells novels may be divided into three groups: 1. The social-political science fiction novels of his early years, where he put his scientific knowledge to literary use in a series of semi scientific novels prognostic of the future (The Time Machine, The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, etc.). 2. The realistic novels of his great fiction period, which were as great an influence on the generation of that era as were the plays by Ibsen and Shaw (Marriage, Ann Veronica, Tono Bungay). 3. The novels and books of his latest period, vehicles for his political theories (The Shape of Things to Come, The Open Conspiracy, The Outline of History).greatly influenced by the outstanding achievements of such celebrated scientists of his day as Faraday, Rontgen and Darwin, Wells begins to explore in his works the new world opened up by modern science. His books show not only the ability to make science the matter of a story, but a rare gift of scientific imagination, which makes the most extravagant happenings appear plausible. science-fiction novels are always built on a sound scientific basis. All of them are based on real scientific discoveries and hypotheses. So the chemical decolouring of tissue and the discovery of x-rays prompted Wells to write The Invisible Man. Wells tried his best to make his fantasies convincing. For this reason he would give accurate descriptions of non-existing machines, cite fictitious newspapers articles and scientific reports.of his works show his scientific foresight. For instance in the novel The War in the Air (1908) Wells describes war planes which were first used during World War I. In the novel When the Sleeper Wakes (1899) Wells writes about A-bombs and their radioactive effect 30 years before their invention. These predictions testify to the authors imagination and profound scientific knowledge.originality of Wells science-fiction novels lies in their social problems. Retaining their scientific value his stories and novels often acquire the characteristic features of social utopia or satire. The main trait of Wells creative work is his concern for the fate of The Time Machine (1895) the theme of an unusual scientific invention - a machine capable of travelling through time - is interwoven with the theme of class struggle, class antagonism leading to the degeneration of mankind. The author describes a fantastic machine made of nickel, ivory and crystal and with great artistic mastery depicts the flight through time when days and nights seem like the flapping of a black wing and the sun and the moon become streaks of fire in the sky. However, it is not the main theme in the story. The principal idea of the book is the contrast of the two degenerated races - the Eloi and the Morlocks into which mankind has been divided. Having reached the year 802701, the Time Traveller meets the Eloi - beautiful and graceful, but utterly helpless creatures who live in dilapidated buildings surrounded by neglected gardens. They are the descendants of the ruling classes, the product of luxurious life and aversion for; work. The other race, the horrible and pale Morlocks, who live in the underground caverns resemble animals. The Morlocks are the descendants of workers who had lived in the dark underground factories many years before. Out of habit, they continue working for the Eloi, they provide them with clothes and food, but hunt the Eloi at night and feed on their meat. The more remote future visited by the Time Traveller is even grimmer. He sees a desert land of monster crabs creeping out of the sea.The Time Machine one can feel Wells pessimism. The writer does not see any ways of saving mankind from war and moral degradation. Wells thought the working class was too ignorant to fight for its happiness. This idea gave birth to the horrible figures of the Morlocks. Despite his pessimism Wells hoped that mankind would be able to escape degeneration and build life on more rational basis. The dreadful scenes depicted by the author serve as a warning to mankind, an appeal to give up exploitation and violence.Island of Doctor Moreau (1896) and The Invisible Man (1897) treat another theme, very characteristic of Wells - the loneliness of the scientist in the bourgeois world and the danger of science in the hands of individualists. For all his respect for science and scientists, Wells understood that science might become a destructive force if put in the hands of mercenary people and egoists. Wells does not approve of superman, an ideal of the bourgeoisie, created by Nietzsche. A superman indifferent to good and evil, coming to power through crime is shown by Wells as a miserable maniac, doomed to death. Such a superman is Doctor Moreau - a talented surgeon. Persecuted by hypocrites he flees to a desert island and continues experimenting on animals turning them into strange humanlike creatures. He does it for two purposes: to surround himself by obedient creatures who look upon him as God and to revenge upon the hateful world of human beings, creating a parody of mankind. The world of Doctor Moreau is horrible and hopeless and its creator and master - lonely and unhappy, in the end being killed by the humanlike creatures of his own making. Elements of social satire are apparent in this novel. Like the Yahoos in Jonathan Swifts novel Gullivers Travels those half people, half beasts, remind of some people of the bourgeoisie. Their cruelty is combined with cowardice and hypocrisy. A man who accidentally finds himself on the island of Doctor Moreau and later returns to England is disappointed to see the same society of brutes among the civilized Englishmen.novel The Invisible Man deals with a similar theme - the tragic loneliness of a bourgeois scientist resulting in moral degradation. The action is set in a small town in the south of England. The talented physicist Griffin who becomes invisible having discovered the secret of the discolouring of tissue perishes struggling against the conservative world of Philistines. He turns into a savage and commits horrible crimes. A great scientist becomes a dangerous maniac and murderer. great period as a novelist began about 1905 with Kipps. Here at last he discovered something he had never possessed before - humour mixed with tender sympathy. He began to deal with the world he knew instead of the world he dreamt about. next bid for fame was as an historian and sociologist. His work The Outline of History (1920) issued in 2 volumes was an attempt to write the historical section of the World Encyclopedia which was Wells dream. This work provides a thorough analysis of different historical events and induces to think of history as a process of logical connections on a world scale.keenly felt the contradictions tearing apart English bourgeois society and was interested in social reforms by means of which he wanted to help people achieve better life. However, he was carried away by Fabian ideas. He did not understand the role of the proletariat and dreamed about talented intellectuals who should start a gradual reforming of the world. Wells hoped that some capitalists would finance them. His future world was that of an improved World Capitalist system.

William Somerset Maugham

1874-1965Somerset Maugham is one of the best known writers of the present day. He was not only a novelist of considerable rank, but also one of the most successful dramatists and short-story writers.. S. Maugham was born in Paris, where his father was a solicitor for the British Embassy. His mother died when he was eight. Two years later the father followed, and the orphan child was sent to his paternal uncle, a clergyman in Whitetable, Kent. What he experienced in that cold and rigid environment he has told in Of Human Bondage, which except for its ending is almost entirely autobiographical. At thirteen he was sent to Kings School, Canterbury, with an intention that he should proceed to Oxford and prepare to enter the church.he had always wanted to write and finally secured his uncles permission to go to Heidelberg University. According to his uncle's will he had to choose a profession and he chose medicine, thus entering St. Thomas Hospital in London in 1892. In 1898 he attained his medical degree, but he never practiced, except for a brief period in the Lambeth slums as an internist. In those six years I must have witnessed pretty well every emotion of which man is capable. It appealed to my dramatic instinct. It excited the novelist in me. I saw how men died. I saw how they bore pain. I saw what hope looked like, fear and relief. I saw dark lines that despair drew on a face. This experience resulted in writing the first novel Liza of Lambeth (1897). He then visited Italy and France, where he settled down in Paris. His talent for fiction, however, had little success and he tried his hand at playwriting. His luck turned only in 1907, with his first successful play Lady Frederick. In the succeeding years he produced plays which made him both famous and prosperous.times he went on round the world trips, and spent long periods in the USA, the South Seas, China and Russia. During World War I he enlisted with a Red Cross Ambulance Unit. Later, however, he was transferred to the Intelligence Service (Secret Service) and was sent to Russia to prevent the Bolsheviks from coming to power in Russia and prevent the change of the the 1930s Maugham settled down near Paris. At the outbreak of World War II he was assigned to special work at the British Ministry of Information in Paris. The Nazi advance overtook him there; he managed, however, to reach England, leaving behind him all his belongings and many of his unfinished manuscripts. In the years following he settled down in England.Human Bondage (1915) is considered to be his masterpiece. It is clearly based on the authors personal experience, but the novel should not be regarded as autobiographical. This is a story about Philip Carey, brought up by his uncle, a vicar. He prayed much and believed in the omnipotence of God. This was the first bondage he experienced in life - religious bondage. Being lame he experienced physical bondage which in a way isolated him from others. He studied art for two years but he realized that his wish to become a real artist would never come true. Philip left Paris to become a medical student. His love affair with Mildred, a waitress in a tea shop, brought him financial difficulties and he left his medical service. The reality which was offered him differed terribly from the ideal of his dream. He experiences other bondages - cruelty, unhappiness, grief and pain, both physical and moral. They all are the consequences of the unjust social system.and Ale (1930) - was claimed by Maugham himself to be the best of his books. It represents the backstage life of literary profession. The Moon and Sixpence (1919) deals with the life of a painter.possessed a keen and observant eye and in his best works he ridiculed philistinism, narrow-mindedness, hypocrisy, snobbery, money worship, pretence, self-interest, etc. His acid irony and brilliant style helped him win a huge audience of readers.. S. Maugham, a highly prolific novelist and playwright, has left a legacy of novels, novelettes, short stories, essays and over 20 plays. Maugham's other chief works include: novels - The Painted Veil (1925), The Narrow Corner (1932), The Razors Edge (1944); plays: The Circle (1921), Caesars Wife (1922), The Constant Wife (1927), The Sacred Flame (1929).s short stories are based on his numerous travels in the South-East of Asia. There are a great many collections of stories to his credit: The Trembling of a Leaf (1921), On a Chinese Screen (1925), The Casuarina Tree (1926), Six Stories Written in the First Person Singular (1931), A King (1933), Cosmopolitans (1936), Creatures of Circumstances (1947) and others.Moon and Sixpence. The novel which has rather an unusual plot is partly based on the life story of the famous French painter Gauguin, who being an innovator and rebel in art wanted to do away with the conventionalism in bourgeois art.Strickland, a London stockbroker of middle age, who gets obsessed by an irresistible desire to express himself in painting, abandons his business career and his wife. He leaves London for Paris, where he devotes himself to painting. Although none of his paintings are appreciated in Paris and he is almost starving, his decision to paint is irrevocable. The only person who understands Strickland's creative genius is the painter Dirk Stroeve. Trying to save Strickland from a terrible disease and starvation, Dirk Stroeve brings him home where he sacrifices his time, his comfort and his money for Strickland. But instead of gratitude Strickland shows his callousness and inhumanity towards Dirk Stroeve. He seduces Stroeves wife Blanche who falls in love with him. When the latter takes no more interest in her, she commits suicide.after years of resultless struggle in Paris Strickland moves to Marseilles. He spends about four months at Marseilles where he finds it impossible to earn the small sum he needs to keep body and soul together. His imagination being haunted for a long time by an island all green and sunny, encircled by sea more blue than is found in the Northern latitude, he decides to go to the South Seas. By a chance of luck he boards a ship bound for Australia, where he works as a stoker thus getting to Tahiti. There he marries a Polynesian woman Ata and devotes the rest of his life to painting. Strickland dies of leprosy. According to his will his wife burns their house the walls of which had been covered from ceiling to floor with elaborate compositions by Strickland. Everything had been burnt and only on discovering some canvases Strickland had once carelessly tossed aside during his years of unrewarded work, does the world of art realize it has lost a genius.novel is an illustration of one of Maugham's favourite convictions that human nature is a knit of contradictions, that the workings of the human mind are unpredictable. Strickland is concentrated on his art. He is indifferent to love, friendship and kindness, and inconsiderate to others. He ruins the life of Dirk Stroeve and his wife who nursed him when he was dangerously ill. He does not care for his own wife and children and brings misfortune to all the people who come in touch with him. But on the other hand we cannot deny his talent as an artist, a creator of beauty. His passionate devotion to art arouses the readers admiration. Strickland cannot help acting according to his nature, and he cannot care for anything else but art as art is the only means for him to express himself., however, is hardly ever tolerant and patient with geniuses. Most often a genius has to die before he is acknowledged. Maugham shows how blind the bourgeois public is to real beauty. Later Stricklands works are bought by the public because it is fashionable to have them in ones flat. The author mocks at the Philistines represented by Mrs. Strickland who has hated her husband so long. Now she finds his paintings a great consolation for they are so decorative.important character of the novel, Dirk Stroeve is shown as an antipode to Strickland. He is a very kind man, but a bad artist, though he possesses a keen sense of beauty and is the first to appreciate Stricklands talent. Stroeve paints easily and is able to cater for the vulgar tastes of the public. The author shows that the public lacks sensitivity and imagination therefore real art is as unattainable for the rich as the moon is. The title served to Maugham as a symbol for two opposing worlds - the material world quit by Strickland, where everything is thought of in terms of money and the world of pure artistry and craving for beauty.

Richard Aldington

1892-1962Aldington was born in the family of a solicitor at Portsmouth, Hampshire, England on July 8, 1892. He was educated for four years at Dover College and at London University, but did not complete his education at the university because of financial problems of the family. But he provided himself with the informal education due to his fathers excellent library, and studying with his older friend Dudley Grey who was a classical scholar and a traveller.was writing (chiefly verse) from about the age of fifteen and never considered any profession except writing. In 1913 he became literary editor of the Egoist whose sponsors were of the same group that later introduced Imagism - a group of poets whose chief concern was to produce a lasting image. They sought absolute freedom of form. This literary trend arose in England in the first quarter of the XX century, as a protest against abstract poetry.1916, at the age of twenty-four, Aldington entered World War I as a private in the infantry, later becoming an officer. His two and a half year active duty during the war influenced greatly upon his further literary career. However, he had to leave the army with a bad case of shell shock. For some time he worked at The Times literary supplement, reviewing French books. At the same time he translated from Italian and Latin and made his living by criticism. During this time he managed to publish four volumes of poetry which attracted the attention of the leading literary circles. However, he dropped his creative writing in verse to devote all his attention to prose. He lived for varying periods in Italy, France and Switzerland and later settled on the Riviera, where he lived until the outbreak of World War II. Then he went to the USA where he lived for the rest of his life.greatly influenced his world outlook and brought him to regard the duty of a writer in a new light. He broke away from decadence and came to appreciate only those books which were written out of a mans guts and showed life as it really was. Few novels are more biting in their analysis or more indignant in their presentation than the Death of a Hero (1929) and The Colonels Daughter (1931).s other principal works include: Images Old and New (a book in verse, 1915), Roads to Glory (short stories, 1930), Soft Answers (novelettes, 1932), All Men Are Enemies (a novel, 1933), Life of a Lady (his only play, 1936), Life for Lifes Sake (autobiography, 1941), Portrait of a Genius (a biography of D.H. Lawrence, 1950).of a Hero, dedicated to the so-called lost generation, is Aldingtons first and most important novel. Containing a passionate protest against both war and the rotten order of things in his own country, it displays English intellectual and social life before and during World War opens with a prologue about George Winterbournes death.

George was killed soon after dawn on the 4th November, 1918, at a place called Maison Blanche. ...He was the only officer in his battalion killed in that action, for the Germans surrendered or ran away in less than an hour... The whole of his company were lying down waiting for the flying trench-mortar squad to deal with the machine-gun, when for some unexplained reason George had stood up and a dozen bullets had gone through him. Silly ass, was the Colonels describes how Winterbournes relatives receive the news from the War Office which runs - regret to inform ... killed in action ... Their Majestys sympathy... The telegram went to the home address in the country, and was opened by Mrs. Winrebourne. Such an excitement for her, almost a pleasant change, for it was pretty dull in the country just after the Armistice. She was sitting by the fire, yawning over her twenty-second lover... Mrs. Winterbourne liked drama in private life. She uttered a most creditable shriek, clasped both hands to her rather soggy bosom, and pretended to faint. ...But the effect of Georges death on her temperament was, strangely enough, almost wholly erotic.get acquainted with the main characters of the book: George Winterbournes parents, his wife Elizabeth, his mistress Fanny and Georges friend who is the bearer of Aldingtons views and comments as well. Elizabeth and Fanny were not grotesques. They adjusted to the war with marvelous precision and speed, just as they afterwards adapted themselves to the postwar. At the fatal news Mr.Winterbourne had fallen upon his knees (not forgetting, however, to ring off the harpy).the very beginning Aldington exposes the moral standards of bourgeois society. The first part of the book opens, after the break of the news about Georges death, with characteristics of Victorian England about the year 1890. The author tells about Georges parents, a petty bourgeois family and a very different England, that of 1890, and yet curiously the same. An England morally buried in great foggy mappings of hypocrisy and prosperity and cheapness. The working class beginning to heave restively, but still moody, still under the Golden Rule of Ever remember, my dear Bert, you may one day be manager of that concern.the second part the narrator tells us through many flashbacks about George Winterbournes life. The author dwells on family relations, love, modern art and criticizes mercilessly modern capitalist society and civilization.third part of the novel is entirely devoted to Georges Active Service on the Continent - mainly in France. Here Aldington gives a truthful picture of World War I. He does not describe much the trenches and soldiers in the war. Nevertheless we see the senselessness of the war and fully agree with the author that millions of people are killed for nothing. George suffers at the feeling that his body has become worthless, condemned to a sort of kept tramps standard of living and ruthlessly treated as cannon-fodder. He suffers for other men too, that they should be condemned to this; but since it was common fate of the men of his generation he determines he must endure the beginning of the book we learn about Georges death as told by his commander, a colonel, so at the end of the book we get to know about the last minutes of George Winterbournes life.title of the book Death of a Hero is ironical. There was nothing heroic in George Winterbournes death, it was quite useless and senseless. I think that George committed suicide in that last battle of the war. I dont mean shot himself, but it was so very easy for a company commander to stand up when an enemy machine-gun was traversing says Georges friend ... Something seemed to break in Winterbournes head. He felt he was going mad, and sprang to his feet. The line of bullets smashed across his chest like a savage steel whip. The universe exploded darkly into oblivion. called his book a song of lamentation for the dead of the generation that went through the horrors of the war, a memorial in its ineffective way to a generation which hoped much, strove honestly and suffered deeply.

Archibald Joseph Cronin

1896-1981.J. Cronin is a representative of realism in contemporary English literature. He criticized various negative sides of bourgeois England, such as medical service, the life of the coalminers and the system of education., a Scottish novelist and physician, was born at Cardross, Dumbartonshire, the only child of a working class family. His father was Catholic and his mother was from a strongly Protestant family. He became fatherless very early and was educated at Dumbarton Academy at the expense of his uncle. During his school years he took great interest in literature. At the age of thirteen he won a gold medal in a nation-wide competition for the best historical essay of the year. He grew away from religion and realized his own dream of brotherhood between people of different churches. This spirit of conciliation marked all his books dealing with questions of for natural sciences got the upper hand and in 1914 Cronin began to study medicine at Glasgow University. His studies were interrupted by war service in the navy. However, in 1919 he graduated from the university with honours. Then he embarked as ships surgeon on a liner bound for India. Various hospital appointments followed later.1921 he married and commenced practice in South Wales, where he got acquainted with the coalminers, their conditions of life, and their hard work. While working there he took two higher medical degrees. In 1924 he was appointed Medical Inspector of Mines. In 1925 he was awarded with M. D. honours by the University of Glasgow. Subsequently he started working as a doctor in the West End of London, where he amassed a large 1930 his health broke down, and while convalescing in the West Highlands of Scotland he turned to writing and started to write his first novel Hatters Castle, which was published in 1931 and very soon translated into 5 languages and was filmed in 1941.s Castle. The novel was an instantaneous success, and was highly estimated both by critics and readers. The writer has created an impressive character of Mr. James Brodie, a tyrant to his family - his wife Margaret and his children Matthew, Mary and Nessie. Margaret, who was once beautiful and gay, was just a piece of property to Brodie. Even if he seems to love someone - this is a strange love of an egoist. This concerns his younger daughter Nessie whom he made a physical and moral ruin. Their daughter Mary is a contrast to both her father and her mother. She strives for happiness and she is brave and decisive. She doesnt fear Mr. Brodie and she is always ready to defend her younger sister whom she loves dearly. When Mr. Brodie gets to know about Marys relations with Denis Foyle and her pregnancy he drives her away from home. He never mentions her by name, he calls her the one I kicked out of my home. Mary is homeless and helpless. But her hope of life is Denis, the father of her future child. Unfortunately, at the moment when Mary is giving birth to her child her beloved Denis parishes when the storm breaks out and the lightning strikes the train right on the bridge. Mary returns home but she is neglected by her father. She tries to care about him and to please him although he is not the man who can appreciate it. He drives his little daughter Nessie to despair and suicide. He wanted her to be always top of the class and win the Latta scholarship. He always threatened to kill her if she didn't win. Nessie did not win the Latta competition and she knew what that meant for the ambitious man like her father and she committed suicide. Mr.Brodie sent his son Matthew to India, but instead of earning money there Matthew demanded money from his mother, and she sold and mortgaged everything she could, concealing it from her husband, to send Matthew 40 pounds. Eventually, Matthew left for America taking his father's mistress Nancy with him.the publication of his first novel Cronin determined to devote himself to literature, for all his life he had been intensely interested in the world of letters. In 1935 the novel The Stars Look Down appeared. In a short time it gained popularity both in Europe and America, and brought him fame. It is a novel of deep social problems which examines injustices in a North England mining community. Cronin shows the hard life and working conditions of the miners. David, the main character, wishing to serve his people, joins the Labour Party but soon gets disappointed. He realizes how deep the gap is between what the labourists say and the reality of life, the gap between the rich and the poor. He loses elections and returns to the mine with clear mind and heart.War II caused changes in Cronins literary activities. He left for America and in his subsequent novels he dealt less and less with burning social problems. His novels of this period are: The Keys of the Kingdom (1941) - a story about a catholic missionary Father Francis Chisholm who goes to China to convert the Chinese to Christianity. He becomes familiar with the teachings of the Chinese philosopher Confucius, adopts a simple way of life, and advocates ecumenical cooperation between all Christians; The Green Years (1944) which describes the childhood of an Irish boy in a small Scottish town; Shannon's Way (1948) - a sequel of the previous novel. In The Spanish Gardener (1950) and Beyond this Place (1953) the author analyses the psychology of the characters without touching upon social questions.other best-known books are: Adventure in Two Worlds (1952) - an autobiographical novel in which he returned to his experiences as a doctor in Scotland and South Wales; The Crusaders Tomb (1956)); The Northern Light (1958); A Song of Sixpence (1964).World War II A.J.Cronin travelled with his family in Europe. He moved to Switzerland and settled down in Lucerne. He had lived in Switzerland for the last 35 years of his life. He died on January 9, 1981, in Montreaux, Switzerland.Citadel. When the novel The Citadel was published in 1937, it gained world fame at once. It fascinates the reader not only with its interesting plot but also with its realism. At the beginning of the novel we get acquainted with Andrew Manson. He has just graduated from the university. He arrives at Blaenelly, a small provincial town in South Wales where he is to start his medical career as an assistant to a doctor. He is excited by the prospect of his future work and even the rainy October afternoon and the dull bare landscape could not spoil his cheerful mood. But the work at Blaenelly turns out to be more difficult than Andrew had imagined. Old doctor Page is so seriously ill that he cannot help Andrew even with his advice. He sees that his knowledge gained at the university is not sufficient. Besides he has ho experience and does not know the work conditions .of a doctor in a small provincial town lacking even a primitive hospital. These conditions are clearly described by Philip Denny, a clever and talented surgeon: Theres no hospital, no ambulance, no X-rays, no anything. If you want to operate you use the kitchen table. You wash up afterwards at the scullery bosh. The sanitation won't bear looking at. In a dry summer the kids die like flies with infantile cholera.local authorities do not adopt any measures to stop the epidemic. Manson's attempts to summon the District Medical Officer end in failure. Andrew understands that being a doctor he is responsible for the health of the people on his cards. He must find some means of fighting with the indifference of the government. Thus he agrees to Dennys proposal to blow up the old sewer, which is the cause of infection. After blowing it up Andrew feels exceedingly happy.Blaenelly is not the right place for Andrew who wants to be independent, who wants to do something really good for the people. So he and his wife Christine Barlow, a school teacher, leave Blaenelly for Aberalaw where he gets a post as assistant with the Medical Aid Society. In Aberalaw the financial side is better, so are the working conditions, though far from good. He has to face many difficulties. As Andrew is just and honest, it is against his conscience to write a certificate of incapacity for work to a man who is fit for it. Such a case presents itself which is enough to start a trouble. Many of his patients come to him and demand their cards back, they do not want him as doctor. Besides it makes Andrew indignant that the doctors must pay a fifth of their income to the chief doctor. However, worst of all was the routine of the members of the Committee of the Medical Aid Society, who did not want to do real scientific work. Time passes until the patients begin to feel confidence in the young doctor and respect Christine, Andrew makes up his mind to take the examination for the M.R.C.P. (Member of the Royal College of Physicians) degree. After achieving the new degree Andrew turns to actual problems - he writes a scientific work in order to improve the life of the miners. Assisted by Christine he makes a number of experiments on guinea pigs, but his work is interrupted by ignorant members of the Committee. He is summoned to appear before the Committee for doing his work without the necessary permit.finds out that there are things which he cannot fight alone - namely - the whole medical system of bourgeois England. He feels tired, irritable, worried. He gets utterly disappointed with his work at Aberalaw and drops it. With his last money he buys a practice in a poor district of London. His earnings at first are hardly sufficient for food. To Andrews wife Christine it seems real work, but Andrew has got tired of all his vain attempts to be of great use to his people. He looks back and sees only defeats, sees that the medical system is rotten and conservative. And Andrew turns away from the principles he has tried hard to fight for. In London he has no true friends like Denny and Hope to support him, but such as Doctor Freddie Hampton and the like, who know how to succeed, of course, not by honest work but by means of cheating, charging large fees and prescribing stock medicine for every disease. He begins to strive only for material wealth and succeeds. Life moved too swiftly for him to pause long for reflection. The pace exhilarated him. He had a false sensation of strength. He felt vital, increasing in consequence, master of himself and of his destiny. Christine sees the changes in her husband and is terribly upset. She tries to explain to him that he is becoming a victim to the very system he so hated earlier. When Andrew sees that his worshipped surgeon Ivory cannot perform a simple, operation, the result of which is the death of his patient, he feels guilty, and he understands that he has gone from real life, that he has betrayed his noble cause. He decides to continue his medical practice on a high scientific standing. Christine is willing to support him. When Manson is firm in his decision to begin a new life he has to suffer another blow - Christine meets a tragic death, she is run over by a bus. Only with the help of his true friends does Andrew get over it. He regards Christine's death as punishment for his crime. At first Andrew thought that he could not bear his misfortune. Supported by his friends, he recovers. Together with Denny and Hope they decide to leave London for Stanberough, a small provincial town, to start good Christines death as punishment for his crime. At first Andrew thought that he could not bear his misfortune. Supported by his friends, he recovers. Together with Denny and Hope they decide to leave London for Stanberough, a small provincial town, to start good work. And the reader believes that they will devote their lives to benefiting mankind.last hour in London Andrew spent at Christines grave, thinking of all he had gone through.

Graham Greene

1904-1991Greene, an English novelist and short story writer, was born at Berkhamstead. He was educated at Berkhamstead School of which his father was headmaster. He studied also at Oxford, where he won a fellowship in Modern History. Then he moved to London where he worked as sub-editor of the London Times (1926-1930). He travelled a good deal in America and for some time he lived in Mexico, which became a scene of more than one of his books.1935 to 1939 he was a film critic for the Spectator. When World War II broke out he went to West Africa to work for the Foreign Office. From 1954 G.Greene worked as a journalist in Indo-China.s novels deal with real-life burning problems. His observations are concentrated on the actual details of poverty and misery. The author penetrates the weak spots in the capitalist world and explores the corruption of the human spirit. Social conditions are shown only as a background for his novels, though he does not lead the reader away from reality into the world of dreams and fantasy.bourgeois critics class Greene among the modernists because the themes employed by Greene and the modernists are much the same. But Greenes pessimism and skepticism differ from those of the modernists. While their bitterness is inspired by a hatred of humanity, Greenes pessimism rests upon a deeply rooted sympathy for mankind. Unlike the modernists who are mostly interested in the description of the crime itself, Greene tries to investigate the motives behind the crime. He shows that peoples bad qualities are the natural result of the cruel inhumane conditions of life. He reveals the corrupting influence of capitalist civilization on mans known as the author of psychological detective novels - entertainments, and serious novels - as he called them. The main themes of both genres are much the same, only in the serious novels the inner world of the characters is more complicated, the psychological analysis is deeper. His serious novels contain a penetrating treatment of psychological, social and religious problems. They reflect the moral bankruptcy of capitalist society and are consequently written in dark, gloomy colours. In these novels Greene often comes out as a severe critic of bourgeois society and an influential fighter against colonial policy.his novel England Made Me (1935) he exposes with great satiric forces the back-stage secrets of the black market and cosmopolitan big business. Feeling keenly the unhealthy tendencies of capitalist civilization he has created shocking and moving scenes in his novel Brighton Rock (1938).one of his most considerable post-war novels The Heart of the Matter (1948) Greene tries to prove that happiness is an impossibility for the sensitive man, that no one can arrange another's happiness.s well-known novel The Quiet American (1955) gives evidence of great changes in the authors world outlook. He has come to the conclusion that in the complicated present-day political situation an honest person cannot stand aside from social struggle.1961 Greene published one of his best, but at the same time the most contradictory novels A Burnt-Out Case. In this novel Greene has concentrated his attention on a complicated psychological problem - on the inner tragedy of a well-known Belgian architect who is not only disillusioned with his own life but also with the whole Western civilization.novel The Comedians (1966) is built up on two different and contradictory planes. One of them is the tragicomedy played by the middle-aged white colonial officials - a comedy characteristic of Greene-the-skeptic. The more important, new plane, however, is the serious one - the fight of the Haitian partisans against Papa Docs regime. The scene is laid in Haiti, in the year 1965, when the relations between the US government and the local puppet regime became cooler owing to the uprising in Santo Domingo.other novels belonging to the serious category are: The Man Within (1929), The Name of Action (1930), Rumour at Nightfall (1931), Its a Battlefield (1934), The Power and the Glory (1940), The End of the Affair (1951), Our Man in Havana (1958), A Burnt-Out Case (1961), Doctor Fisher from Geneva or the Bomb Party (1980 ), Jaccuse (1982).novels classed as entertainments are: Stamboul Train (1932), A Gun for Sale (1936), The Confidential Agent (1939), The Ministry of Fear (1942), Loser Takes All (1955), Travels with My Aunt (1970).Quiet American. The action of Greenes novel takes place in Viet-Nam, where the French colonizers are waging a dirty war against the Vietnamese people. The main hero of the novel, Fowler, an English newspaper reporter, has lived long enough to get disappointed in life; according to him he has come to Viet-Nam to die. Although Fowler is married (he has left his wife Helen in England), he is in love with a Vietnamese girl Phuong with no intention to marry her. Events bring Fowler in close touch with Pyle, a young American, who is an American Intelligence Service agent. But their acquaintance does not last long - Pyle is murdered. Pyles murder makes Fowler turn over in his mind all his intercourse with him.a newspaper reporter Fowler has always remained true to his principles - not to interfere with any events, but remain a neutral observer. He does not strive for sensations - he simply writes about things he has seen. That is why from time to time he goes to the frontline on his own risk. Such excursions make him see the suffering of the Vietnamese people and the futility of the war going on.and Pyle meet first at the hotel Continental on the day of Pyles arrival in Saigon. Pyle does not know the real state of affairs in Viet-Nam and Fowler kindly agrees to inform the latter of the present situation in the country. The narrator of the events, Thomas Fowler, cool, self-possessed, is determined not to get personally involved in any of the political issues. Pyle, the quiet American, as Fowler called him, seems at first an innocent virtuous youth, who has adopted all the catchwords about liberty, democracy, self-determination and book-learnt doctrines that can give a patriotic American an excuse for trying to clean up the world in the interests of idealism and big business.gets acquainted with Phuong. He is fascinated by the girl and begins to court her. His visits to Fowler become more frequent and once he even admits that he is, going to propose to the girl. He is sure that Phuong will be willing to marry him, because he would give her wealth and happiness, while Fowler can offer her nothing.Fowler receives a letter from his editorial office - in England in which he is told to return to England. Being afraid that Phuong might agree to marry Pyle Fowler tells her that he is not going to England. Phuong refuses to marry Pyle and remains with Fowler.a terrible explosion takes place in Saigon; many people are killed and crippled. On seeing the disaster all around Fowler suspects that it is Pyle who supplies the colonial authorities with American plastics. He remembers his conversation with Mr. Heng, a Chinese merchant, who has given him some hints about Pyles activities in Viet-Nam; Fowler understands how Pyle fights for on returning home Fowler finds Phuong gone. Overcome by anger, pity and loneliness Fowler goes to the front, where he witnesses all the horrors of war. It makes him hate the war, and he sees that many French officers and soldiers share his opinion.meets Pyle and discusses different problems with him. The innocent American maintains the opinion that only the USA can save Viet-Nam from all disasters and calamities and has the right to interfere into the home affairs of other countries. Fowler sees that this young modest and innocent fellow has become more dangerous to the Vietnamese people than all the French troops, for his activities cause death to women and children. Fowler and Heng arrive at the decision to do away with Pyle. Fowler invites Pyle to dinner at a small remote restaurant. On the way to the restaurant Hengs men kill Pyle. Thus Pyles own harmful activities have doomed him to death.conflict between Pyle, an agent of the American Secret Service, and Fowler, and English journalist, throws some light on the role the United States played in Viet-Nam. The book exposes the real aims of the Western civilization in that country. The political problem, however, is closely connected with the moral aspect of the question: has any nation the right to arrange the life of another nation, has it the right to decide another nations fate?Quiet American is Greenes masterpiece not only for its high ideological content. It demonstrates also Greenes art of composition, his ability, logically to develop an exciting plot.

Charles Percy Snow

1905-1980Percy Snow was born in Leicester. By the end of the twenties he graduated from Cambridge University and went on working there in the field of molecular physics. In 1930 he became a Fellow of his college. This academic life went on until the beginning of World War II, when he became a civil servant and was engaged in selecting scientific personnel. After the war C.P. Snow worked in industry and was appointed a Civil Service Commissioner. For excellent service he received a knighthood in 1957. His studies in physics are as widely known as his articles and lectures on both the relations between literature and science and literature and society.the sixties he visited the Soviet Union with his wife Pamela Hansford Johnson, a well-known English woman novelist. She is the author of socio-psychological novels An Avenue of Stone (1947), The Survival of the Fittest (1968), The Good Listener (1975), satirical novels The Unspeakable Skipton (1959), Cork Street, Next to the Hatters (1965)..P. Snow began writing fiction in the thirties. His first novels were Death Under the Sail (1932) and The Search (1934). Six years later, in 1940, his novel Strangers and Brothers appeared. This novel was the opening book in a long sequence of novels written in the forties, fifties and sixties. Later Strangers and Brothers became the general title of the cycle.second novel entitled The Light and the Dark, was published in 1947. It was succeeded by Time of Hope (1949), The Masters (1951), The New Men (1954), Homecomings (1956), The Conscience of the Rich (1959) and The Affair (1960). In the 1960s Corridors of Power (1964) and The Sleep of Reason were added to the previous novels. The next novel, entitled Last Things was published in 1970.general C.P. Snow, true to critical realism, shows the panorama of English society in the prewar, war and post-war, years. In Strangers and Brothers and Time of Hope one can see the middle class in an English provincial town, in The Light and the Dark - the aristocracy, in Corridors of Power - the upper English administration. In The Masters and The Affairs the novelist reveals a profound knowledge of university life. He is particularly receptive to the conflicts of the people belonging to different classes and social groups.Strangers and Brothers series of novels, record in the first person the experiences of a lawyer and government administrator named Lewis Eliot. These novels deal with his background, his struggles, his friends, his college at Cambridge, and the complicated society he lives in. The sequence of the novels is linked together through this autobiographical character. Sometimes he takes a direct part in the action, at other times he tells the story or comments on the events of the novel. Lewis Eliot, like Snow, was born in 1905. The author depicts his own experiences and his impressions of society from 1914 till the middle fifties. As a young man in Time of Hope Lewis falls deeply in love with a neurotic girl, Sheila. He courts her for years, and wins her confidence although he never wins her love. She falls in love with Hugh, a man as weak and uncertain as herself. In order to win Sheila, Lewis convinces Hugh that she is entirely mad and Hugh, always anxious to avoid complications, disappears and never sees her again. Deprived of the only man she could love, Sheila turns to Lewis in desperation and marries him. Lewis quite openly assumes the responsibility for her, yet, at the end of the novel, he begins to complain that his attention to Sheila has begun to ruin his career as a barrister.the novels that deal with the later life of Lewis, he frequently repeats that he has sacrificed his career for Sheila, acknowledging less and less as time goes on, his responsibility for her. Lewis Eliot is a lawyer, who belongs to the sphere of society as Snow himself. His views and standpoints are influenced by bourgeois society in which he was born. Thus Snow portrays his narrator as a love-sick young man, enterprising barrister, who is also a cool and intelligent government official and a compassionate family man with his second wife.and Brothers end with Lewis Eliot, who is trying to contrive a dramatic acquittal for his friend George Passant, on a charge of fraud. Though acquitted, George is never entirely redeemed by society. But he has had his moment of drama and remains a naive but noble man.these novels are full of trial scenes, startling revelations, and dramatic rehearsals which even Lewis Eliots calm cannot tone down completely.s novels are most effective when they relay on a kind of nostalgic social history, generally, the best novels are those dealing with the early days in Lewis Eliots career. These scenes are described with ease, fondness and are rich in details.of Power is a novel of the English top officials and statesmen of the fifties. The chief figure is a tough and ruthless English politician Roger Quaife, who wants to do something valuable with the power he has won. His effort to take Great Britain out of the nuclear arms race provides the centre of the story - a story of what men of action do, in success and in failure.main hero of The Affairs, Donald Howard, a young scientist whose reputation for being a Red is known to the reactionary administration of Cambridge University, is to be expelled on the pretext of having falsified a scientific document.people of different political views are involved in the conflict, and the novelist exposes their real motives covered by the mask of academic traditions.s novels in the cycle The Strangers and Brothers are first and foremost problem novels. He had been particularly interested in such ethic problems as humanism, conscience, justice, truth, power, and sense of responsibility.these novels have been erroneously called political mainly because the authors attitude towards the British Establishment is critical though in these novels Snow solves different ethical problems from the point of view of an individual - the part played by an individual in society and the influence of society on the individual, why people are strangers to one another and not brothers, what interests unite them.problems of contemporary politics, of various ideological trends or theoretical currents are rarely treated in his work. In spite of the autobiographical nature of the whole cycle he carefully avoids giving his personal opinion, but tries to present some special conflict as impartially and objectively as possible. The main theme of his books is struggle for power: who will be elected? (The Masters) Who will retire? (The Affair) Which party will win? (Corridors of Power), etc. This general theme of struggle for power is not presented as refined game, which involves many people, governed by different interests, emotions, traditions and laws.

William Golding

1911-1993prominent place in modern English literature is taken by William Golding due to his philosophical and allegorical novels. He was educated at Grammar School and at Oxford. He was in the Navy during World War II. Golding is the author of a number of essays, radio plays, short stories, a good deal of poetry, but his name first became known to the general public when his novel Lord of the Flies was published in 1954. It appeared as a response to Robert Michael Ballantynes novel Coral Island (1858). That novel irritated Golding by its vitality and romanticism when he read the book already after the war. The group of children who happened on an uninhabited island behaved themselves like real gentlemen. They were kind and humane, the fire they made united them. Golding's war experience installed him in the idea that evil and cruelty are inherent in man and can not be explained only by the pressure of social mechanisms. He said that the basis of evil is to be found inside the country and its people. The cruelty of fascism and the war horrors made the writer think over the fate of mankind and nature of man.of the Flies. His novel Lord of the Flies is written as a warning about the subsequences of fascism. This novel has been called a modern classic and has had great popularity. The story tells of how nice people can, under certain circumstances, become savages very quickly. It is a story about a group of boys who found themselves on a desert island when their plane was shot down, and all the grown-ups perished. The island is not a real island; it symbolizes everyone who tries to act with common sense: to keep order, to built huts on the beach, to keep a fire on the mountain top as a signal. They make the fire like Ballantynes boys did, but the fire disunites them. Stealing fire is denying the very idea of democratic equality and the conception of self estimation of individuals. Intelligent and clever boys from respectable families turn into a tribe of savages with the ugly features of tribal consciousness. The image of the beast is materialization of fear which the boys experience because they feel defenseless not only before power of nature but before each other. The original group splits into two - united around Ralph and around Jack. Simon and Piggy are the only boys whom Ralph really trusts. Jacks group is called savages. They paint their faces, hunt pigs, kill them and then in the evening dance around The Dance of Death. They turn into savages forgetting all norms of civilized society they were born into. Jack is only interested in hunting and power. It was sort of a game at first. They hunted pigs, and enjoyed it. Kill the pig. Cut her throat. Spill her blood! But very soon hunting down the beast turns into hunting down a human being. I cut the pigs throat, said Jack, proudly, and yet twitched as he said it. Can I borrow yours, Ralph, to make a nick in the hilt? The pigs head, covered by myriads of flies, is materialization of emanation of evil. It is stated by Ralph when he says, I fear ourselves. The boys regress to savagery. Like real savages they tear Simon during their dance and then brutally and deliberately smash Piggy with a huge stone. In reversing the pattern of childrens adventure stories and locating evil in the boys themselves, Golding reenergized the notion of original sin. Civilization regresses rapidly. Though Golding shows that not all boys turn into savages. Ralph, Piggy, Simon, Eric and Sam still leave the hope of possibility to fight and conquer evil.

Ralph looked at him dumbly. For a moment he had a fleeting picture of the strange glamour that had once invested the beaches. But the island was scorched up like dead wood - Simon was dead and Jack had... . The tears began to flow and sobs shook him. He gave himself up to them now for the first time on the island; great, shuddering spasms of grief that seemed to wrench his whole body. His voice rose under the black smoke before the burning wreckage of the island; and infected by that emotion, the other little boys began to shake and sob too. And in the middle of them, with filthy body, matted hair, and never wiped nose, Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of mans heart, and the fall through the air of the true, wise friend called Piggy. This is a serious warning to the world of grown-ups whose inner cruelty and savageness showed up openly and disastrously in the war.novels by William Golding are The Inheritors (1955), Pincher Martin (1956), Free Fall (1959), The Spire (1964), The Pyramid (1967), Envoy Extraordinary (1971), Darkness Visible (1979), Rites of Passage (1980), A Moving Target (1984) and others.fashionable doctrines of progress and evolution are upended in The Inheritors where we see a crucial stage in the rise of our species through the eyes of Neanderthal man (and hear a good deal of his utterance too). Neanderthal man is innocent, pious and amiable, while our own progenitor, Homo sapiens, who comes to displace him in the process of evolutionary development, is double-minded and capable of self-deception. The theme of the human fall is present again. In Pincher Martin a shipwrecked sailor imagines that he is clinging to a bare rock desperate to survive. His past is recalled; but at the end we learn that he died in the wreck and that the whole recollection has taken place at the point of drowning. Free Fall is the study of Sammy Mountjoy, a successful artist, how he loses his soul and is brought up against the consequences when the girl he has seduced goes insane. In The Spire Golding studies the moral and spiritual condition of Jocelin, dean of a cathedral, whose obsessive resolve to build a great cathedral spire regardless of the consequences has a dual motivation in faith and in sheer self-assertion, through which the powers of heaven and hell collide. Golding continued to produce novels in which he experiments boldly with substance and style.Golding is also the author of the play The Brass Butterfly (1958), a collection of verse Poems (1934), and the books of essays The Hot Gates (1965) and A Moving Target (1982).

Iris Murdoch

1919-1999Murdoch has written novels, drama, philosophical criticism, critical theory, poetry, a short story, a pamphlet but she is best known and most successful as a philosopher and a novelist. Although she claims not to be a philosophical novelist and does not want philosophy to intrude too openly into her novels, she is a Platonist and moral philosophy, aesthetics, and characterization are clearly interrelated in her novels.began to write prose in 1953. She soon became very popular with the English readers. Her novels Under the Net, The Flight from the Enchanter, the Sandcastle, The Unicorn, The Red and the Green, The Time of the Angels, An Accidental Man, The Black Prince, and many others are characterized by the deep interest in philosophical problems and in the inner world of the man. Iris Murdoch shows the loneliness and sufferings of the human being in the hostile world.Murdoch was born in Dublin in 1919. She attended school in Bristol and studied philosophy at Cambridge and Oxford, the two oldest universities in England. Then for many years Murdoch was teaching philosophy at Oxford. French writers and philosophers, including Jean-Paul Sartre and Samuel Beckett influenced her early writing. By the time she began to write Murdoch was a convinced adherent of the existentialist trend in philosophy and these problems rule the focus of her attention in many of her novels. Her first novel, Under the Net (1954), has extensive existential derivations. She published two books on philosophy: Sartre, Romantic Rationalist and The Sovereignty of Good Over Other Conceptions.always strived to be a realist in her novels and mentioned that not once in her interviews and critical essays on literature and style. Although honest, intelligent, and well written, the novels of Iris Murdoch nevertheless lack clear definition. Her manner was that of intricate weavings, blending both reality and dreams, and all that enveloped in a complicated psychological pudding. Under the Net fits into the humorous pattern set by Kingsley Amis in Lucky Jim (1954) and John Wain in Hurry on Down (1953). Her Jake Donaghue of this novel is akin to Amiss Jim Dixon and Wains Charles Lumley, in that he maintains his own kind of somewhat dubious integrity and tries to make his way without forsaking his dignity, and increasingly difficult accomplishment in a world which offers devilish rewards for loss of integrity and dignity. Jake is an angry middle-aged man who mocks society and its respectability. He moves playfully around law and order; he does small things on the sly-swims in the Thames at night, steals a performing dog, sneaks in and out of locked apartments, steals food. His is a puerile existence in which he remains pure even while carrying on his adolescent activities.the Net, The Flight from the Enchanter, The Sandcastle, and The Bell established Iris Murdochs point of view and method, and set up the major themes of her career: her wish to preserve in fiction the sense of the contingent, the unpredictability of human nature, the contraries of ordinary character, the intractability of the world where we live.s novels written in the 60s and 70s of the twentieth century such as A Severed Head (1961), The Time of the Angels (1966), A Fairly Honorable Defeat (1970), The Sacred and Profane Love Machine (1974), The Black Prince (1973), Henry and Cato (1976) are full of senseless crimes, horrors and intricate love affairs. The extreme situations in which she places her characters spring from the synthesis of two contradictory propositions that underlie her works. These propositions run as follows: Everything must happen in accordance with the laws of logic therefore nothing that happens is intrinsically surprising and Everything that happens is contingent, therefore it is free and involves a total response of the human personality, therefore it is always surprising. So the world of Iris Murdoch is a mixture of most of the elements of our everyday life and experience, and symbolic elements loaded with implications and puzzles. In her latest novels the writers inlaid vision has become suppressed and obscured in a way by somewhat pessimistic approach to the individual and society.characters are memorable primarily because they do have a realistic psychological and philosophical basis. Unlike those of many modern writers, Murdochs characters exist independently, not as a reflection of their author, and she presents them, even demonic figures like Julius King in A Fairy Honourable Defeat, lovingly and without judgment. In keeping with her moral philosophy, few of Murdochs characters possess correct vision, but many experience momentary enlightenment.Unicorn, one of Murdochs best novels, gives a picture of different human passions and relationships. Marian Taylor, a young educated woman was asked as a private teacher to a family living in very lonely place. Very soon Marian begins to notice very strange, mysterious and unusual things about the place and the the dominant theme of Murdochs later novels. They emphasize and aspire towards the truth-conveying capacity of art, for Murdoch believes that great art reveals truths for generations to come, and she insists on the artists duty to tell truth as he sees it. Critics complain about unevenness, the need for editing, and intellectualism, but there is no denying the rich and varied texture of the Murdoch world, peopled with real and various characters.Bell. For Iris Murdoch, there are basically two kinds of people. There are those for whom life is desperate; they are deeply committed to whatever they are engaged in, and they can see nothing else. In their steadfastness, they may become grim and morbid. Then there are those for whom life has not settled into any fixed pattern; they are flexible and mobile, desirous of variety and willing to make changes. In the first group, we have Michael Meade, the leader of a lay religious community located near an Anglican Order of nuns. In the second group, there is Dora, an easily distracted young woman, who comes to the community with her youthful friend, Toby Gashe.conflict concerns the relations of the spirited, sensual, and unintelligent Dora with her husband and later with the community, whose spirit is so completely different from her own. The clash between the two is inevitable, and Iris Murdoch chooses to define the conflict in terms of burlesque - a practical joke demonstrates Doras need for self-expression at the expense of the community. The joke centers around a bell, a bell that comes with a legend from the past. In the legend, the bell of the then Benedictine order of nuns fell into the lake, the result of the Bishops curse. The curse itself derived from the infidelity of a nun and her refusal to confess. When the bell flew into the lake, the guilty nun, overwhelmed by the demonstration of Gods power of punishment, flew from the Abbey and drowned herself in the lake.present community is planning to install a bell of its own, and it occurs to Dora and Toby Gashe that a bell they have located at the bottom of the lake should be substituted for the new one. The one at the bottom, they feel, is the bell of the legend; the substitution will provoke astonishment and also provide them with entertainment.

John Robert Fowles

1926-2005Robert Fowles was born March 31, 1926 in Leigh-on-Sea, a small town located about 40 miles from London in the county of Essex, England. He recalls the English suburban culture of the 1930s as oppressively conformist and his family life as intensely conventional. Of his childhood, Fowles says I have tried to escape ever since.attended Bedford School, a large boarding school designed to prepare boys for university, from ages 13 to 18. After briefly attending the University of Edinburgh, Fowles began compulsory military service and within two years was promoted to lieutenant.then spent four years at Oxford, where he discovered the writings of the French existentialists. In particular he admired Albert Camus and Jean-Paul Sartre, whose writings corresponded with his own ideas about conformity and the will of the individual. He received a degree in French in 1950 and began to consider a career as a writer.teaching jobs followed: a year lecturing in English literature at the University of Poitiers, France; two years teaching English at Anargyrios College on the Greek island of Spetsai; and finally, between 1954 and 1963, teaching English at St. Godric's College in London, where he ultimately served as the department head.time spent in Greece was of great importance to Fowles. During his tenure on the island he began to write poetry and to overcome a long-time repression about writing. Between 1952 and 1960 he wrote several novels but offered none to a publisher, considering them all incomplete in some way and too lengthy.late 1960 Fowles completed the first draft of The Collector in just four weeks. He continued to revise it until the summer of 1962, when he submitted it to a publisher; it appeared in the spring of 1963 and was an immediate best-seller. The critical acclaim and commercial success of the book allowed Fowles to devote all of his time to writing.Aristos, a collection of philosophical thoughts and musings on art, human nature and other subjects, appeared the following year. Then in 1965, The Magus was published. Among the seven novels that Fowles has written, The Magus has perhaps generated the most enduring interest, becoming something of a cult novel, particularly in the U.S.parallels to Shakespeares The Tempest and Homers The Odyssey, The Magus is a traditional quest story made complex by the incorporation of dilemmas involving freedom, hazard and a variety of existential uncertainties. Fowles compared it to a detective story because of the way it teases the reader: You mislead them ideally to lead them into a greater truth...its a trap which I hope will hook the reader, he says.most commercially successful of Fowles novels, The French Lieutenants Woman, appeared in 1969. It resembles a Victorian novel in structure and detail, while pushing the traditional boundaries of narrative in a very modern manner. Winner of several awards it is the book that todays casual readers seem to most associate with Fowles.the 1970s Fowles worked on a variety of literary projects, including a series of essays on nature, and in 1973 he published a collection of poetry, Poems. He also worked on translations from French, including adaptations of Cinderella and the novella Ourika. His translation of Marie de Frances 12th century story Eliduc served as an inspiration for The Ebony Tower, a novella and four short stories that appeared in 1974.Martin, a long and somewhat autobiographical novel spanning over 40 years in the life of a screenwriter, appeared in 1977, along with a revised version of The Magus. These were followed by Mantissa (1982), a fable about a novelists struggle with his muse; and A Maggot (1985), an 18th century mystery which combines science fiction and history.addition to The Aristos, Fowles has written a variety of non-fiction pieces including many essays, reviews. He has also written the text for several photographic compilations, including Shipwreck (1975), Islands (1978) and The Tree (1979).1968, Fowles has lived on the southern coast of England in the small harbour town of Lyme Regis (the setting for The French Lieutenants Woman). His interest in the town's local history resulted in his appointment as curator of the Lyme Regis Museum in 1979, a position he filled for a of essays, Wormholes was published in May 1998, devoted to literature, conservation, natural history and a variety of other interests.Collector is the story of the abduction and imprisonment of Miranda Grey by Frederick Clegg, told first from his point of view, and then from hers by means of a diary she has kept, with a return in the last few pages to Cleggs narration of her illness and death.s section begins with his recalling how he used to watch Miranda entering and leaving her house, across the street from the town hall in which he worked. He describes keeping an observation diary about her, whom he thinks of as a rarity, and his mention of meetings of the Bug Section confirms that he is an amateur lepidopterist. On the first page, then, Clegg reveals himself to possess the mind-set of a collector, one whose attitude leads him to regard Miranda as he would a beautiful butterfly, as an object from which he may derive pleasurable control, even if collecting her will deprive her of freedom and life.goes on to describe events leading up to his abduction of her, from dreams about Miranda and memories of his stepparents or coworkers to his winning a small fortune in a football pool. When his family immigrates to Australia and Clegg finds himself on his own, he begins to fantasize about how Miranda would like him if only she knew him. He buys a van and a house in the country with an enclosed room in its basement that he remodels to make securable and hideable. When he returns to London, Clegg watches Miranda for 10 days. Then, as she is walking home alone from a movie, he captures her, using a rag soaked in chloroform, ties her up in his van, takes her to his house, and locks her in the basement room.she awakens, Clegg finds Miranda sharper than normal people like himself. She sees through some of his explanations, and recognizes him as the person whose picture was in the paper when he won the pool. Because he is somewhat confused by her unwillingness to be his guest and embarrassed by his inadvertent declaration of love, he agrees to let her go in one month. He attributes her resentment to the difference in their social background: There was always class between us.tries to please Miranda by providing for her immediate needs. He buys her a Mozart record and thinks, She liked it and so me for buying it. He fails to understand human relations except in terms of things. About her appreciation for the music, he comments, It sounded like all the rest to me but of course she was musical. There is indeed a vast difference between them, but he fails to recognize the nature of the difference because of the terms he thinks in. When he shows her his butterfly collection, Miranda tells him that he thinks like a scientist rather than an artist, someone who classifies and names and then forgets about things. She sees a deadening tendency, too, in his photography, his use of cant, and his decoration of the house. As a student of art and a maker of drawings, her values contrast with his: Clegg can judge her work only in terms of its representationalism, or photographic realism. In despair at his insensitivity when he comments that all of her pictures are nice, she says that his name should be Caliban, the subhuman creature in Shakespeares The Tempest.uses several ploys in attempts to escape. She feigns appendicitis, but Clegg, only pretends to leave, and sees her recover immediately. She tries to slip a message into the reassuring note that he says he will send to her parents, but he finds it. When he goes to London, she asks for a number of articles that will be difficult to find, so that she will have time to try to dig her way out with a nail she has found, but that effort also is futile.the first month has elapsed, Miranda dresses up for what she hopes will be their last dinner. She looks so beautiful that Clegg has difficulty responding except with confusion. When she refuses his present of diamonds and offer of marriage, he tells her that he will not release her after all. She tries to escape by kicking a log out of the fire, but he catches her and chloroforms her again, this time taking off her outer clothing while she is unconscious and photographing her in her underwear.desperate, Miranda tries to kill Clegg with an axe he has left out when he was escorting her to take a bath upstairs. She injures him, but he is able to prevent her from escaping. Finally, she tries to seduce him, but he is unable to respond, and leaves, feeling humiliated. He pretends that he will allow her to move upstairs, with the stipulation that she must allow him to take pornographic photographs of her. She reluctantly cooperates, and he immediately develops the pictures, preferring the ones with her face cut off.caught a cold from Clegg, Miranda becomes seriously ill, but Clegg hesitates to bring a doctor to the house. He does get her some pills, but she becomes delirious, and the first section ends with Cleggs recollection: I thought I was acting for the best and within my rights.second section is Miranda's diary, which rehearses the same events from her point of view, but includes much autobiographical reflection on her life before her abduction. She begins with her feelings over the first seven days, before she had paper to write on. She observes that she never knew before how much she wanted to live.describes her thoughts about Clegg as she tries to understand him. She describes her view of the house and ponders the unfairness of the whole situation. She frequently remembers things said by G. P., who gradually is revealed to be a middle-aged man who is a painter and mentor whom Miranda admires. She recreates a conversation with Clegg over, among other things, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. She gets him to promise to send a contribution, but he only pretends to. She admits that he's now the only real person in her Cleggs shortcomings with the blindness, deadness, out-of-dateless, stodginess and, yes, sheer jealous malice of the great bulk of England, and she begins to lose hope. She gets Clegg to read The Catcher in the Rye, but he doesnt understand it. Miranda feels more alone and more desperate, and her reflections become more philosophical. She describes her reasons for thinking that seducing Clegg might change him, and does not regret the subsequent failed attempt, but she fears that he now can hope only to keep her prisoner.begins to think of what she will do if she ever gets free, including revive her relationship with G. P. on any terms as a commitment to life. Miranda becomes sick with Cleggs cold, literally as well as metaphorically. As she becomes increasingly ill, her entries in the journal become short, declarative sentences and lamentations.third section is Cleggs, and picks up where his first left off. He tells of becoming worried over her symptoms and over her belief that she is dying. When he takes her temperature, Clegg realizes how ill Miranda is and decides to go for a doctor. As he sits in the waiting room, Clegg begins to feel insecure, and he goes to a drugstore instead, where the pharmacist refuses to help him. When he returns and finds Miranda worse, Clegg goes back to town in the middle of the night, to wake a doctor; this time an inquisitive policeman frightens him off. Miranda dies, and Clegg plans to commit suicide.the final section, less than three pages long, Clegg decides that he is not responsible for Mirandas death, that his mistake was kidnapping someone too far above him, socially. As the novel ends, Clegg is thinking about how he will have to do things somewhat differently when he abducts a more suitable girl that he has seen working in Woolworths.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. What are the chief characteristics of Galsworthys works? Comment on the most typical features of the Forsyte family. What is the Forsytes attitude to works of art, to love and marriage? Which is the most typical snob in the Forsyte family? Speak on the subject of The Forsyte Saga.

. What is characteristic of Bernard Shaws dramatic works? Why did Bernard Shaw make society itself the principal character in his play Widowers Houses?does Bernard Shaw depict the working class people in his play Pygmalion?

. Why is George Wells called the great English writer who looked into the future? What was his attitude towards scientific progress? How did the idea of writing the novel The War of the Worlds come to Wells? What did he aim at?is the contribution of Wells to world literature?

. Say a few words about Somerset Maughams life. What is the popularity of the novel Of Human Bondage due to? What is the main theme of The Moon and Sixpence? Does Maugham try to be impartial in his attitude to his characters?

. Say what is the meaning of the term the lost generation. How does Richard Aldington see the social scene of prewar England and what is the attitude towards it of the young generation he describes? What is Aldingtons altitude towards World War I?

. Briefly tell Cronins biography. Name the novels written by Cronin before The Citadel. What is the main theme of The Citadel? Comment on the negative characters of the book. What are the most attractive characters in the novel?

. What are the chief contradictions in Graham Greenes works? Give a brief account of his life and literary work. Name the most popular novels of the writer. Comment on the main theme of most of his novels. What motivates the plot of The Quiet American?

. What philosophyc ideas influenced on the creative activity of I. Murdoch? How does Murdoch combine serious and ridiculous material in her works? How does she reveal the features of her characters in the novel The Bell? Comment on the principles of life, which on Murdoch's opinion give the moral advancement and correct vision?


young men - a new trend in English literature appeared in the fifties of the XX century as a result of disillusionment in post-war bourgeois reality. The writers of the trend criticize contemporary society, but do not show the way out of the impasse.were not angry in the strict sense of the word, they were not all young and not all men either (Doris Lessing and Iris Murdoch are women), but all the members of the group shared a strong fresh viewpoint which had made them unquestionably a new and interesting literary phenomenon of the post-war years. These writers of the fifties, judging by their works and their manner of writing are widely different. At the same time these writers have also much in common. They all belong to the young writers who came into literature after World War II. In different ways and in many voices the younger generation of writers, critics, poets and intelligentsia in the age group of roughly 25 to 35 had been expressing irritation at the scene around them. With the production and immense success of J. Osbornes Look Back in Anger which was staged at the Royal Court Theatre in London in 1956, they found a symbol of their dissatisfaction. The term derived from the play itself - Angry Young Men has by now passed into the language. The theatre was an important forum for the angry young men and for their more radical contemporaries. Harold Pinter (b.1930) with his works The Caretaker, The Homecoming, No Mans Land, and other dramatist of the time associated with the Theatre of the Absurd abandoned realism, plot and characterization in order to communicate a sense of emptiness and absurdity of modern known writers of the group are the novelists. Kingsley Amis, John Wain and John Braine, Doris Lessing, Iris Murdoch, and playwright John Osborne.these writers pictured the life of young people dissatisfied with something in their surrounding life. Their works are full of irritation and confusion caused, on the one hand, by the bourgeois way of life and on the other, by their lack of purpose. were some concrete social factors which called forth the general discontent among the post-war younger generation. When World War II came to an end, many people in the Western countries expected democratic reforms. This expectation was especially strong in England where the Labour Party promised a free and prosperous life to millions of common people. Therefore many people supported the Labour Party which was going to carry but a social revolution. Years passed, however, and nothing changed for the better. Politicians are marvels of energy and principle when they are out of office, but when they are in they simply run behind the machine. As soon as the British Labourists came to power they forgot to abide by their commitments. These social factors also determined the peculiarities of literary works by the young writers of the fifties.young people of the 50s can rightly be called second lost generation. The two generations lived in the same time and conditions - the war and post-war time. They both lost their previous beliefs in the governments who promised them better life, they were disillusioned and disappointed, they did not enjoy real democracy and their bitterness and anger was endless.there is a great difference between the two generations. Lost generation actively fought for better life in the trenches of World War I, while angry young men were passive. They did not take part in the war; they were young people fresh from red-brick universities with the diplomas in their pockets. They could not use their knowledge. They spoke much about faithfulness but they were not devoted to their friends and beloved. Their disillusion concerns primarily their conditions and unsettledness. Daily routine sharpened their realization of being useless in the society on which they laid their hopes. They cried out their hearts and souls undertaking no steps to make the life better. Angry young men declared that they were not only lost but also betrayed and directed their bitter abuses at everybody and everything.belong to the English post-war generation which has not found its place in life. They did not, however, have any noble cause in the name of which they would be ready to fight. Being limited by their petty-bourgeois world outlook, and their own individualism, their protest is passive. Their rebellion is that of petty-bourgeois youth, a social section, which was very numerous in England in the 50s of the XX-th century. In general, the heroes of the angry young men writers are young men who came from the lower quarters to the upper decent society by either getting education or by marrying a girl from a rich family. The society was strange and hostile to the young men. Some of them fought tooth and nail against pusillanimous sycophantic representatives of the upper class, others returned to their own folk. Many of them, in case they returned to their own class, loathed the idea of suffering disabilities in all aspects of life. But all these people had one common feeling - the aversion to the Establishment.

John Osborne

1929-1994Osborne was born on December 12, 1929 in Fulham, London. His father was an advertising copywriter. He died in 1941, leaving John Osborne an insurance settlement which gave the boy the possibility to enroll at Belmont College in Devon from which he was expelled after striking the headmaster at the age of sixteen. Later he spent about eight years as an actor in a provincial repertory theatre. After serving as actor-manager for some repertory companies he decided to try his hand at playwriting. When his first produced play Look Back in Anger appeared at the Royal Court Theatre, its author was totally unknown. But immediately after the staging of the play Osborne became noted as a representative of a new generation of dramatists. His play is considered by many critics to be the turning point in post-war British theatre and his character Jimmy Porter came to represent the entire generation of young men of the period.1957 The Entertainer was produced, at the Royal Court. Osborne continues to examine the society, showing the life of three generations of entertainers which symbolizes the decline of England after World War II. Epitaph for George Dillon appeared in 1958. Since that time J. Osborne has written many other plays staged by both British theatres and theatres abroad, including The World of Paul Slickey (1959) and Luther (1961), Inadmissible Evidence (1965), as well as numerous articles and autobiographical essays.Osborne died on December 24, 1994 due to complications caused by diabetes. His literary heritage is large. Besides his works for the stage he left several autobiographical works.Back in Anger. In the years immediately after the war the best of the notably successful dramatists wrote mainly about the problems of the rich and well-to-do. Working-class characters rarely appeared and when they did, it was usually to supply comic relief. With the production of Look Back in Anger the whole situation a play about the rebellion of an educated young man of the lower classes against the contemporary society, and about loving and being loved. It was written by a young author about his own generation.most noticeable feature about this work is the presence of a dominating male hero - Jimmy Porter, an aggressive and unsuccessful university graduate. Jimmy Porter got married to Alison, a girl from a rich family whose world is alien to him. He lives in a tiny room with the pretty young woman, but he is appalled by the indifference and apathy around him.Porter is probably the best known manifestation of the angry spirit in Britain. He is also a very disagreeable hero - a self-centered bully filled with self pity, but pitiless with others. He is angry with his wife and with his mother-in-law, likewise with education, religion, love, the government and almost anything and everything that happens to come his way. He is in conflict with the world around him. People do not seem to be capable of dying for high principles and motives. Jimmy Porters famous statement about the causes is as personally revealing as it is politically pointed: I suppose people of our generation aren't able to die for good causes any longer. We had all that done for us, in the thirties and the forties, when we were still kids. There arent any good, brave causes left. If the big bang does come, and we all get killed off, it wont be in aid of the old-fashioned, grand design. Itll just be for the Brave New-nothing-very-much-thank you. About as pointless and inglorious as stepping in front of a bus. The statement expresses both political skepticism and personal frustration. It is a comment on society and a way for Jimmy to express his anger churning within him. Causes are, and always were, too abstract for people like Jimmy.Porter comes from a workers family, but has broken from his own class and become a cultural snob (he reads only the safe classics and the Sunday Paper, likes only traditional jazz), he lives in an attic flat in a drab Midland town and makes his living by keeping a sweet stall in the market. Everything in his life dissatisfies him, and the tone of his conversation being mainly monologue is one of complaint. Jimmy doesnt act but speaks much. He hates everything and everybody. God. How I hate Sundays, he exclaims, its always so depressing, always the same. We never seem to get any further, do we? Always the same ritual. Reading the papers, drinking tea, ironing... Nobody thinks, nobody cares. No beliefs, no convictions and no enthusiasm. Just another Sunday evening. The principal sufferer from all this is his wife. Jimmy says that Shes moved long ago into a lovely little cottage of her soul, cut right off from the ugly problems of the 20-th century altogether. She prefers to be cut off from all the conveniences weve fought to get for centuries. When Alisons friend Helena, an actress, arrives she makes the situation intolerable by her presence and packs off Alison to her home and family. In the third act Jimmy turns out to be settled fairly happily with Helena because she stands up to him more and partly because he is not bound to her by anything. Having lost her baby, Alison comes back, and Helena leaves Jimmy. In his frustration Jimmy voices what is his indictment of society: They all want to escape from the pain of being alive. And, most of all, from love. I always knew something like this would turn up - some problem, like an ill wife - and it would be too much for those delicate, hot-house feelings of yours. Its no good trying to fool yourself about love. You cant fall into it like a soft job, without dirtying up your hands. It takes muscles and guts. And if you cant bear the thought of messing up your nice, clean soul, youd better give up the whole idea of life.Helena and Alison seem to understand what Jimmy is saying. They love him, not because they agree with his attacks on religion, love or genteel society, but because they recognize and respond to his human energy.other characters of the play only help to reveal Jimmys conflict with the society, the reasons of his anger, bitterness and solitude that runs through the whole play. Jimmy protests against his being inferior, against decency of the society, respectability of the middle class. He is a tragic figure: no ideals, no hope, no love. Jimmy is a rebel, having no programme and aim. He is dull - neither negative nor positive. We feel concerned with his irritable character as if everything got mixed in him, with his own jargon, his own mode of life, his brusque humour and bitter irony. His protest is typical for a definite age of 20 and 30 years. But at least he is honest: he protests against being inferior in the society. Do you know - I have discovered what is wrong with Jimmy? says Helena. Its very simple really. He was born out of his time. Theres no place for people like that any longer - in sex, or politics, or anything... he thinks hes still in the middle of the French Revolution. He doesnt know where he is, or where hes Osbornes play the hero is at odds with the world around him, still he is deeply related to this society even when he is rebelling against it, rebelling without aim, for the world of today is not treating him according to his expectations.Osbornes play Epitaph for George Dillon also displays a good deal of sympathy for the English life he satirizes. A young man, George Dillon, who wishes to write great plays, is taken in by a lower middle-class family. George thinks of the family as a series of caricatures, a group of people who speak only in terms of accounts and ads and the latest programmes on television. Yet dull and commonplace as these people are, George takes advantage of them. He sponges money and food, seduces their daughter, plays upon the mothers feeling for their son who was killed in the war. He begins to write trash for weekly repertory theatres and makes a good deal of money. The family, insensitive to his artistic betrayal, are delighted that all their notions of an artist and a gentleman have been so grandly reinforced. Yet Georges success and the fact that the daughter of the house has become pregnant force George into marrying the girl and becoming a permanent part of the family.Osbornes heroes are young men, who have obtained a university education in some second-rate provincial university. After graduation they work, as a rule, at some modest post as librarians, office clerks, salesmen, etc. Their behaviour is often challenging and far from being correct. Their dull life depresses them and therefore they are angry with themselves and with the people they come in touch with. But after having loudly uttered their discontent, they all make, each in a different way, a compromise with the society they have been revolting against, they become easily satisfied with some material gain. They do not have any higher social ideals.

Kingsley Amis

1922-1995of the most widely read of contemporary British writers, Kingsley Amis was born in London. He began to write poetry when he was still a student at Oxford. Soon several successful novels followed: Lucky Jim (1953), That Uncertain Feeling (1955), I Like It Here (1958), Take a Girl Like You (1960), One Fat Englishman (1963).the above mentioned novels, he has written a survey of contemporary science fiction. His literary journalism is straightforward, lucid and highly intelligent.1961 Kingsley Amis lectured on English literature at the University College, Swansea, then in Cambridge.the publication of his first two novels Lucky Jim and That Uncertain Feeling Amis became one of the most popular prose writers in England. Bourgeois criticism laid stress on the comic nature of his novels. He became a popular talented English humourist. The most characteristic feature of Amiss novels, is, however, the central hero, the angry young man, dissatisfied with everything and everybody in his surrounding world. The novels contain many farcical scenes. But it is not the comic side which is the most important. The main value of Amiss novels lies in the realistic portrayal of young English intellectuals, and in the presentation of the social scene in the post-war fifties.60s and 70s of the XX-th century Amis turned his attention to science fiction (New Maps of Hell. A Survey of Science Fiction. 1960; The Alteration. 1976) and to the theme of crime (The Crime of the Century). In 1986 he became the winner of the Booker prize.Jim. The hero of the novel Jim Dixon, honest but a bit awkward and not self-confident youth, is a recent university graduate where he has taken up medieval history because it is the easiest subject at the university. But he had no interest in it, although he recognizes and respects good teaching and scholarship. He gets a post as an assistant at a provincial university. Dixon finds the whole atmosphere at the university uninspiring and dull. He despises his work and his colleagues, especially professor Welch whose accent he parodies. Dixon is in a kind of opposition to the genteel hypocrisy at the university. But Jims aim, however, is not so much any opposition as a kind of advertisement of his wounded egocentricity.acting has become Jims second nature. It has also made him gloomy, sadistic and solitary. He does not mix with anybody. The reader realizes that Jim has been attached to the university by some mistake. An academic career does not suit him. Once in a drunken state he reveals his real self, and becomes bold and determined. He delivers a lecture on Merry Old England before the academic people, a lecture in which he pours out his bottled-up anger at them. This also marks the end of his university career; he is dismissed on the spot.would have been more natural, perhaps, if Amis had ended the story at this point. The author had, however, no intention to be too radical and undermine the foundations of bourgeois society. Thus he made the novel end happy. A good-natured and unprejudiced businessman, who likes Jims bold address to the hypocritical academics decides to take Jim into his service and makes him a new person, a lucky Jim. Jim is engaged to a girl from a wealthy family and gets a good profitable post. Like that of other angry young men his revolt against hypocrisy and falsity becomes meaningless. He makes a compromise with bourgeois society, and stops being an angry young man.

John Braine

1922-1986Braine was born in Bradford and spent his early years there. He is well remembered in Bradford and he was included in the local newspapers survey of Bradfords best 100. John Braine attended Bradford Grammar School. After taking various odd jobs he became a library assistant at Bingley, and followed this career, with an interval for war service in the Royal Navy, until the success of Room at the Top (1957) enabled him to devote his whole time to writing. In 1951 he spent some time in London in the vain hope of making a living by writing. His verse play The Desert in the Mirror was produced, but without success.the early 1950s Braine wrote a short piece Number Nine Rock about courting in Ripley Glen, which is as much part of the Blackersford district as the textile mills. The line of happiness is the route by which the people of Blackersford reach the Glen which is freedom and space and where there is Number Nine Rock which is simply the place where you take your girl: The happiness can be pinpointed, a line starting at the top of Edwards Way, the broad avenue that leads into Ripley Glen, past Ripley memorial Hospital, past the Albert Institute, with its four stone lions (unsuccessful entrants in the Trafalgar Square competition), past the fire station which looks like a Methodist chapel and over the canal to the huge sprawling hulk of Ripley Mills. Ripley Mills haven't changed much since 1850 when Seth Ripley first built them... Ripley is fixed permanently in the Victorian age. But in one of .its bright patches; Ripley, with its faults, was built for human beings to live in; it was designed as a village, a living community; its not just a sprawl of mean houses, a huddle of rent books. The happiness isnt an accident, for it doesnt have to fight for survival here; Ripley holds it like a sponge, its cumulative, a kind of benign lead acetate accumulating ever since 1850.second novel The Vodi was published in 1959, Life at the Top, a sequel to Room at the Top in 1962. Then the novel The Jealous God came out in 1964. at the Top and its sequel Life at the Top. On the basis of his first novel Room at the Top John Braine has been grouped among the angry young men. Nevertheless, he has been different from the writers of this group. Braine penetrates deeper into the conflict between the hero and society. He depicts the tragedy of a working man, who, in search of a career, corrupts his own soul, becomes cynical, calculating and cruel. His greatest achievement in the novel is his original way of exposing the inhumanity of bourgeois society.hero of the novel Joe Lampton has been brought up on the fringes of poverty and squalor in a provincial town in the North. His sole aim is to fight his way up into the world of money and influence. So when he goes to a new town and a new job, and starts to move among comfortable-off, intelligent people it looks as if the campaign is succeeding. Since he is an attractive and energetic young man, it is not long before a pretty girl, Susan, the daughter of a wealthy mill-owner, falls in love with him. Only one thing holds him back: his love for another woman, Alice. She is married and older than Joe, and her looks are beginning to fade, but between them an extraordinary love has grown up. But he is striving for a place in the society, he is doing his best to win room at the top. Joe marries his boss daughter, and even ten years after his marriage (Life at the Top), he is living the dream life of the successful executive, complete with a luxurious suburban house, and two lovely children. His ultimate objective seems to have been reached: the light grey carpet, the built-in wardrobe, the electric oven, the mixing machine, the pink wall table. But all this belongs to his father-in-law, and he himself is not the master of the situation, he is Browns son-in-law. I would never be any more than a sound reliable man obeying orders without question, he says. He cannot completely forget his background, and when he is coaxed into becoming a Tory councilor, he revolts against their crude self-interest in the council chambers, and makes a startling denunciation of them. However, he is caught in a trap of his own making-trapped by the emptiness of life at the top. Joes greatest feelings are for his daughter Barbara. She is the apple of his eye. When Joe looks at her, speaks to her, plays with her he wants to cry with happiness. But Joe is briskly stripped of his illusions, that is, if he ever had any. Once when he returns home from his business trip earlier than planned, he finds his wife making love in their bedroom with Mark. His first impulse was to kill the man, but he thought that the noise would frighten Barbara and the whole scene would crash her world. Later he finds out that Barbara was Marks daughter, not his. He decides to blow up the prison door and makes up his mind to leave Susan. He gets infatuated with Norah. He is free now. But he got so used to the luxury of his previous life that after his short stay in London with Norah he returns to Susan and to the conveniences of which he became a slave.special merit of Braines novel is the evolution of the hero. Joe Lampton is so typical, so true-to life a portrait that his name has become a literary common noun in England.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Explain the term angry young men. What were the main ideas and slogans of the generation of general discontent? Why were they called the lost generation?

. Give a brief account of John Osbornes life and literary work. Comment on the main theme of most of his novels. Speak on the subject of Look Back in Anger. Name all the characters of the novel and describe their relationship.

. Say a few words about Kinsley Amiss biography. Can we call Kinsley Amis the angry young man or the central hero of his novels? Name his chief novels and themes they deal with.

. What facts from John Braines biography do you know? Speak on the plot of Room at the Top. Why has the heros name become a literary common noun in England?


The woman who has become one of the most popular and prolific of all English detective novelists, acknowledged throughout the world as the Queen of Crime Fiction, Agatha Christie (1890-1976), gained popularity largely, it would seem, by virtue of the skillfully engineered complexity of her plots. Among the books by Agatha Christie are Murder on the Links (1923), Elephants Can Remember (1972) and many others., after reading in a magazine that she was the worlds most mysterious woman, Agatha Christie complained to her agent: What do they suggest I am! A Bank Robber or a Bank Robbers wife? Im an ordinary successful hard-working author - like any other author. Her success was not exactly ordinary. Her seventy-six detective novels and books of stories have been translated into every major language.was born in Torquay in 1890 and began writing at the end of the First World War. In her first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920), she created the now-famous vivacious little Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, the most popular sleuth in fiction since Sherlock Holmes. Poirot and Miss Marples have also been portrayed in the many films, radio programs and stage plays based on her books.1926 her novel The Murder of Roger Ackroyd was published. It is considered to be one of her best works due to its most original non-traditional concept for detective novels - the story is narrated by Dr.Sheppard.Christie was also the author of six romantic novels, written under the pseudonym of Mary Westmacott, and a book of poems and several plays. One of her plays, The Mousetrap, opened in London in 1952 and is still running.of Fate was the last book she wrote before her death in 1976, but in 1975 Curtain: Poirots Last Case, which she had written in the 1940s, was published for the first time.became Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1956 and Dame of the British Empire in of a few women born in the second decade of the century might together illustrate the diversity of the twentieth-century novelists interests. Elizabeth Taylor (1912-1975), the author the novels The Soul of Kindness and Blaming, is a refined stylist whose swift flashes of dialogue and reflection and deft sketches of the wider background give vitality to her portrayals of well-to-do family life in commuter land. Some of her later novels are In a Summer Season (1961), and The Wedding Group (1968). Elizabeth Taylor has humour and compassion as well as disciplined artistry, and has logically been compared with Jane Austen.has Barbara Pym (1913-1980) who tasted fame, sadly enough, only at the end of her life (her real name was Mary Crampton). Another restrained and perceptive artist, she is a master of ingenuous and candid dialogue and reflection which are resonant with comic overtones. Critics called her modern Jane Austin. Excellent Women (1952) and A Glass of Blessings (1958) were reprinted in the late 1970s when Philip Larkin and David Cecil drew attention to the quality of her neglected work. Later novels, The Sweet Dove Died (1978) and Quartet in Autumn (1978), are no less engaging in their blend of pathos and comedy.might well put beside these two English writers the Irish writer Mary Lavin (1912-1996), whose short stories focus on the ups and downs of family life with quiet pathos and humour. Her novels, The House in Clewes Street (1945) and Mary OGrady (1950), are family histories presented with psychological sensitivity and a delicious vein of irony.public domain intrudes more into the work of Olivia Manning (1917-1980) who found herself, with her husband, in Bucharest in 1939, to be driven by German advances first to Greece, then to Egypt. She recorded her experience in her Balkan Trilogy: The Great Fortune (1960), The Spoilt City (1962) and Friends and Heroes (1965), documenting how people behaved as the Nazi menace encroached on English residents. The private story of Harriet Pringle and her husband Guy is one of colliding temperaments.woman who was in the right place at the right time as a future novelist is Doris Lessing (b.1919), brought up in Southern Rhodesia. Her sequence of five novels called Children of Violence begins with Martha Quest (1952) and tells the story of Marthas upbringing and development. It is a story of personal search and struggle, by a self-centered woman, against the fetters of sexual, social and political conventions. Her latest novels of 2005 are The Story of General Dann and Maras Daughter and Griot and the Snow Dog.fascination of the twentieth century history has touched other writers too. Richard Hughess (1900-1976) two volumes of his trilogy, The Human Predicament, on events that culminated in the Second World War, include The Fox in the Attic (1961) and The Wooden Shepherdess (1972), covering the years from Hitlers putsch in 1923 to the Night of the Long Knives in 1934.Trevor (b.1928), is an Irish novelist and short-story writer of broader range and richer gifts, perhaps the most distinctive novelist to emerge since William Golding and Muriel Spark. In The Old Boys (1964) he focuses on a group of cranky old human misfits in a story of an old boys association and their annual reunion, and in The Boarding House (1965) on the inhabitants of an establishment equally conducive to the harbouring of mildly potty and inadequate individuals. Trevors terse, crisp dialogue, and his dry, detached portrayal of seediness, ill-humour are fetchingly entertaining. And there is compassion too. Trevor extended his range in Mrs Eckdorfin ONeills Hotel (1970). A woman photographer is seeking material for her next coffee-table documentary at a Dublin hotel that has decayed from its former splendour and is now used as a brothel. Trevor has continued to be productive as a novelist (The Children of Dynmouth, 1976, and Other Peoples Worlds, 1980), and he is also a versatile writer of short stories. The tales in Angels at the Ritz (1974) show an interest in personal experiences of frustration and anti-climax which naturally called out comparisons with Joyces Dubliners. In 2000 W.Trevor published The Hill Bachelors, delicately revelatory Irish stories and worries about ageing and family. The Story of Luce Gault (2002) and A Bit On the Side (2004), a collection of short stories on adultery, are William Trevors latest books.talent of matching distinction, if not of comparable imaginative range, is that of Jennifer Johnston (b.1930), the daughter of the Irish playwright Denis Johnston, herself a novelist and a playwright. She portrays the Anglo-Irish landed gentry with a subtle registration of their awkward relationship to local peasants and retainers. Since her first novel The Captains and the Kings (1972) she has published many novels. In The Gates (1973) Major MacMahon decays alcoholically while his orphaned niece finds consolation with a peasant boy. In How Many Miles to Babylon (1974) Irish heir and peasant boy go off to fight together as officer and private in the First World War, and the mechanical pressures of military discipline turn their impulsive affection for each other into a cause of tragedy. Her novel The Gingerbread Woman (2000) is a story of personal tragedy intersecting with the national one in present-day Ireland inside a novel being written by the main woman character. Other novels include: The Invisible Worm (1991), dealing with the subject of sexual abuse; This is Not a Novel (2002), and most recently published Grace and Truth (2005).younger novelists now at work A.N. Wilson (b. 1950) has a comparably beguiling sense of humour. In The Healing Art (1980) X-ray reports on two Oxford women are mixed up so that the housewife wrongly thinks she is clear and the English don, Pamela Cooper, struggles unnecessarily to accommodate herself to a death sentence. Pamela, an Anglo-Catholic, is persuaded to seek miraculous healing at the shrine at Walsingham and a seeming miracle ensues. Wilsons registration of the contemporary scene is acutely ironic; yet his strength is that he is not pure satirist, pure humourist or pure moralist, but a piquant blend of all three. The humour is the sharper for the moral seriousness with which it runs in harness.Jansen grew up in Newcastle upon Tyne. In her mid-twenties she moved to London where she spent ten years before going to America. She lives in California with her husband, professor of wild-land sciences.Jansen created a brilliant novel Mary Maddison (1991) about a tragic fate of Elizabeth and her little daughter Mary after the death of Marys grandparents when her uncle Joseph inherited everything and drove Elizabeth and her daughter off the house. Look here, Elizabeth, I can lend you a few pounds to help you get started and you can pay me back when you get a job. To which Elizabeth replied: You can keep your conscience money. Forced to leave the family home they face the deprivation of one of Newcastles poorer areas. Elizabeth, tired and exhausted by daily work died of diabetes the day before Marys thirteen birthday and Marys wanderings in life began. Mary becomes a factory worker where she meets Joe Cowley. When she gets pregnant Joe refuses to bear any responsibility for the child. Mary is thrown back on her own resources once more.Brookfield (b.1960), an Oxford graduate with a First Class Honour degree lives with her family in South London. Her best novels are Alice Alone, A Cast of Smiles, Walls of Glass, The Lover, A family Man. Her latest novel Sisters and Husbands was published in 2002. Its a breathtaking story about two sisters - Anna Lawrence, with a successful career in broadcasting and marriage to David, a wealthy man with a luxurious country home, and Becky, who lives in a dilapidated house in South London, and has to contend with her husband Joe who is struggling to become the chef, and Jenny, his eleven-year-old daughter of the first marriage.Rutherfurd (b.1948) was born in Salisbury, and educated in Wiltshire and Cambridge. For some time he lived in New York, but returned to his roots to research and write the novel Sarum, based on the history of his native town Salisbury. His second novel Russka tells the history of Russia from the Cossack horsemen of the steppes to the events of the Bolshevik revolution. His newer work is the historical novel London (1997) - a saga about the most magnificent city in the world from the days of the Romans through sixteen centuries to the Victorian time and the end of the twentieth century. The last chapter 21 is dated by 1997. Rutherfurds latest novels, published in 2005, include The Princess of Ireland and The Rebels of Ireland.Taylor (b.1965) has written over twenty books, mainly crime novels and thrillers. They include the series featuring William Dougal, a detective who occasionally commits murders as well as solves them; an espionage trilogy whose chronology stretches from the 1930s to the 1980s; psychological thrillers; and books for younger readers. His first novel Caroline Minuscule appeared in 1982. Then came the psychological thriller The Office of the Dead (2000), (the third volume of the Roth Trilogy), and Deaths Own Door (2001), the sixth novel in the Lydmouth Series, which is set about fifty years ago on the Anglo-Welsh borders. His latest novels also include The Judgment of Strangers (1998), Where Roses Fade (2000), Requiem For an Angel (2002), The American Boy (2003) and Call the Dying (2004).Wilson (b.1939) has worked briefly as a teacher, and more successfully as an editor of non-fiction books. She has written history books for children and is interested in history, particularly of the recent past, painting and sculpture, uninhabited buildings, underground structures, cemeteries and time capsules. She has published the psychological crime novels, A Little Death and Dying Voices, and My Best Friend, which was published in 2001.are but just a few more names of masters of pen of the newest period.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Speak on the life and creative activity Agatha Christie. Describe the central figures of Agatha Christies novels. Speak upon the most significant books of the writer.

. Give a brief account of the life and the literary work of Elizabeth Taylor, Barbara Pym, A.N. Wilson, Jennifer Johnston, Sheila Jansen, Edward Rutherfurd, Amanda Brookfield. What joins these authors?



The central distinguishing element of American literature is a strong strain of realism, seen earlier in perhaps Americas greatest novel, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884) by Mark Twain and also in its greatest, or at least, most extensive work of poetry, Walt Whitmans Leaves of Grass (1855). Also, at its best there is a high moral tone to American literature reflected in the constant anguish over the loss of ideals and failure of the American dream to provide opportunity for all.poetry in the 20th century had flourished best. Breaking away from the thin verse and sentimentality that had come to prevail at the end of the 19th century, Edwin Arlington Robinson (1869-1935) led the way in giving both substance and firmness to his poems, especially in his sketches of small-town New Englanders in The Children of the Night (1897), Captain Craig (1902), The Town Down the River (1910), and The Man Against the Sky (1916). Robert Frost (1874-1963) added further strength through the warmth of A Boys Will (1913) and succeeding volumes, creating a modern American version of the pastoral. With dry humor and a fine dramatic ear, he wrote the most popular and most critically esteemed American poetry in the 20th century.the end of the centurys first decade many significant poets had begun to write, and by the end of the 1920s a true renaissance had come. Poets like Edgar Lee Masters (1869-1950), in Spoon River Anthology (1915), Vachel Lindsay (1879-1931), with what he called the higher vaudeville imagination of General William Booth Enters into Heaven (1913) and The Congo (1914), and Carl Sandburg, in Chicago Poems (1916) and Cornhuskers (1918), gave a Midwestern liveliness to the poetic scene. Hart Crane in White Buildings (1926) showed an intense Verbal amplify the new resurgence of verse making were William Carlos Williams, and Marianne Moore, who showed a precision of ear and a sharpness of eye for significant detail that rank her among the finest American poets. Anything, wrote William Carlos Williams, who was a doctor as well as a poet, that a poet can effectively lift from its dull bed by force of the imagination becomes his material. Anything. Such knowledge was liberation. In poetry as in fiction, Southern authors became eminent.important literary movement of the time was Imagism, whose poets focused on strong, concrete images. New Englander Amy Lowell poured out exotic, impressionistic poems; Marianne Moore, from the midwestern city of St. Louis, Missouri, was influenced by Imagism but selected and arranged her images with more discipline. Ezra Pound began as an Imagist but soon went beyond into complex, sometimes obscure poetry, full of references to other art forms and to a vast range of literature. Living in Europe, Pound influenced many other poets, especially T.S. Eliot.was also born in St. Louis but settled in England. He wrote spare, intellectual poetry, carried by a dense structure of symbols. His poem, written in 1922, The Waste Land spun out, in fragmented, haunting images, a pessimistic vision of post-World War I society. From then on, Eliot dominated the so-called Modern movement in poetry. Another Modernist, E.E. Cummings, called attention to his poetry by throwing away rules of punctuation, spelling, and even the way words were placed on the page. His poems were song-like but satiric and humorous. The Enormous Room (1922) by E.E. Cummings (1894-1962), an account of his imprisonment in World War I, told the story of mans ability to refresh his senses despite symbolic regimentation, E.E. Cummings brought gaiety and freshness in poems whose unorthodox typography is no less vital to their success than the continuing youthfulness of his responses. Dos Passos was equally experimental. Three words that still have meaning, he said, that I think we can apply to all professional writing are discovery, originality, invention.Stevens, in contrast, wrote thoughtful speculations on how man can know reality. Stevens verse was disciplined, with understated rhythms, precisely chosen words and a cluster of central images. The poetry of William Carlos Williams, with its light, supple rhythms, was rooted in Imagism, but Williams, a New Jersey physician, used detailed impressions of everyday American life.the aftermath of World War I many novelists produced a literature of disillusionment. Some lived abroad and were known as the Lost Generation. F.Scott Fitzgeralds novels capture the restless, pleasure-hungry, defiant mood of the 1920s. Fitzgeralds great theme, expressed poignantly in The Great Gatsby, was of youths golden dreams turning to disappointment. His prose was exquisite, yet his vision was essentially melancholy and nostalgic. Aldous Huxley (1894-1969) in his first published novels, The Defeat of Youth (1918), Limbo (1920), and Crome Yellow (1921) displays the verve, wit, and wicked sense of fun that captivated the post war generation. While living in Italy for several years Huxley associated with D.H.Lawrence, and there he wrote Those Barren Leaves (1925), and Point Counter Point (1928), His most famous book, Brave New World, appeared in 1932. In it Huxley describes an anti-utopia, an ironic fantasy vision of a soullessly scientific, dehumanized future. In 1937 Huxley settled in California, working there as a screenwriter. He continued to pursue an interest in mysticism, evident in especially in his books Eyeless in Gaza (1936) and The Doors of Perception (1954)had also affected Ernest Hemingway. Having seen violence and death close at hand, Hemingway adopted a moral code exalting simple survival and the basic values of strength, courage and honesty. In his own writing, he cut out all unnecessary words and complex sentence structures, concentrating on concrete objects and actions. The crisply intense prose style of Hemingway was as influential in French and Italian writing as in American as he sought the direct communication of intense feeling in the fewest possible words. His main characters were usually tough, silent men, good at sports or war but awkward in their dealings with women. Among his best books were The Sun Also Rises (1926), A Farewell to Arms (1929) and For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940). He eventually won the Nobel Prize and is considered one of the greatest American writers.expatriate, Henry Miller, used a comic, anecdotal style to record his experiences as a down-and-out artist in Paris. Millers emphasis on sexual vitality made his books, such as Tropic of Cancer (1934), shocking to many, but others felt that his frank language brought a new honesty to literature.Thomas Wolfe felt like a foreigner not only in Europe but even in the northern city of New York, to which he had moved. Though he rejected the society around him, he did not criticize it - he focused obsessively on himself and on describing real people from his life in vivid characterizations. His long novels, such as Of Time and the River and You Cant Go Home Again, gushed forward, powerful, romantic and rich in detail, although emotionally exhausting.southerner, William Faulkner, found in one small imaginary corner of the state of Mississippi, deep in the heart of the South, enough material for a lifetime of writing. Faulkner saw the South as a decayed culture, and his characters were often eccentric or grotesque. His social portraits were realistic, yet his prose style was experimental. To show the relationship of the past and the present, he sometimes jumbled the time sequence of his plots; to reveal a characters primitive impulses and social prejudices, he recorded unedited the ramblings of his or her consciousness. Some of his best novels are The Sound and the Fury (1929) and Light in August (1932). Faulkner, too, won a Nobel Prize.fiction became increasingly popular in the Depression, for it allowed readers to retreat to the past. The most successful of these books was Gone With the Wind, a 1936 best-seller about the Civil War by a southern woman, Margaret Mitchell. Mitchells characters, especially her heroine, Scarlett OHara, and hero, Rhett Butler, were realistically drawn, although the plot at times became melodramatic.western novel became popular in the 1940s. The earliest westerns had been adventures of cowboys and Indian fighters, published in cheap fiction magazines in the late 19th century. Owen Wisters novel The Virginian (1902) had introduced a rugged, self-contained cowboy hero, who embodied the American ideal of the century in American letters brought with it a direct reflection of the disturbing impact of industrialization and urbanization on the ways of life. It also brought new definitions of reality, both scientific and philosophical, that the 19th century had been formulating at the expense of orthodox beliefs. The scope of literary reference was broadened as well as disturbed. Experimental psychology had opened a new approach to the operations of the consciousness and then, through the influence of Sigmund Freud revealed the inherent drama of the subconscious. In stylistics, as well as in subject matter, the new science had its effects on authors, leading them toward meaningful experiments in the communication of realities. The romantic efforts of earlier writers, like Whitman and Emily Dickinson, to originate styles to fit their individual personalities were extended by Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, and others to devise a syntax appropriate to non-Aristotelian logic and new concepts of time. They were not simply trying to be different; on their own 20th century terms they were impelled by an Emersonian intention to make patterns of words correspond to the newly defined nature of things. With such efforts went an increased sense of literary responsibility. Although the modern ways of thinking meant a temporary and confusing dislocation of the man of feeling from his traditional values and modes of expression, the birth of the century was intellectually exciting.20th century attempt to understand the nature of things and develop a new vocabulary and syntax for expressing it led, significantly for the writer, into the development of formalized aesthetic considerations and the emergence of a mature American literary criticism. The distinguished discussions by Henry James of his own intentions and tactics were succeeded by the work of a long line of writers who in their analyses of craft paralleled the influence of their own artistic successes. Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot, and Wallace Stevens were notable examples. Editions of the letters of Pound, Hart Crane, and Stevens deepened the influence of their formal writing. So did the critical comments of Ernest Hemingway, and Gertrude Steins writings about writing may well prove to be her most important contribution to letters.the career of Theodore Dreiser, and with the appearance of Sister Carrie (1900), American fiction entered a new phase of franker realism in its approach to contemporary life. Dreiser drew from the experiences of his own family for his story of the unpunished rise of a woman of easy virtue; he knew that the way up carried unresolved ambiguities with it. Stephen Crane (1871-1900) in Maggie: A Girl of the Streets (written 1892; privately published 1893) and The Red Badge of Courage (1895), which treated cowardice rather than cavalier glory in war, had helped to open the way for unconventional attitudes and subject matter. Many writers turned toward the dark shadows on the American dream. Frank Norris (1870-1902) in The Octopus (1901) dealt with the strangulation by the railroads of independent wheat growers in California. The Jungle (1906), by Upton Sinclair, was based on the evils of the Chicago meat-packing moral didacticism in fiction developed. But most novels in this literary manner of social engineering lacked the ungainly vitality and sympathetic understanding of Dreisers amoral portraits of Jennie Gerhardt (1911) and of the Darwinian rise of the American business magnate in The Financier (1912) and The Titan (1914). Dreiser shifted from the purely personal ethic of these works to a social ethic in An American Tragedy (1925), his greatest novel. Here he indicted society in the guilt of a weak-willed youth tried for murder, for society had held up the goal of success without providing an accompanying morality. The story was an American tragedy, because in a country where the people are themselves their only king, whenever a part of society falls, all society drags itself down in a democratic version of Aristotelian tragedy.writers examined themselves and their society. Jack London (1876-1916) wrote much the same kind of fictional self-analysis in Martin Eden (1909), although he is best known for his vigorous tales of Alaska (The Call of the Wild. 1903) and of the Pacific (The Sea-Wolf, 1904).Lewis (1885-1951), in Main Street (1920), Babbitt (1922), Arrowsmith (1925), and Dodsworth (1929) gave the most popularly received picture of the American tortured, as he put it, like a god self-slain on his modern improved altar. Lewis was a graphic writer. He prepared his image-breaking novels with the precision of a sociologist, gathering characteristic details to integrate into his studies of the crippling small-town and average-city life of businessmen, scientists, preachers, and reformers. In 1930, Lewis became the first American to win the Nobel Prize for literature.Anderson (1876-194)), in the plotless tales of Winesburg, Ohio (1919) and The Triumph of the Egg (1921), showed the tentative gestures of man desperately groping for beauty and fulfillment in the face of personal inhibitions and social frustrations.other significant representatives of the group as writers of fiction were Katherine Anne Porter, best known for her short stories and the novel Ship of Fools (1962), Eudora Welty, and Truman Capote.writers began to look at the complexity of life more as men did. Edith Wharton (1862-1937) approached the problem through the novel of manners. The House of Mirth (1905) and The Custom of the Country (1913) are successful examples of her dissections of the upper classes. Her Ethan Frame (1911), a grim tragedy of the Berkshires, is less typical. Ellen Glasgow (1874-1945), whose first novel appeared in 1897, contrasted the agrarian way of life with the emergent Southern industrialism. She was no sentimentalist. What the South needs is blood and irony, she said. Willa Cather (1873-1947), the finest stylist among the women writers, and a master of tonal effect, developed the same troubled response to her age. In such early novels as O Pioneers! (1913) and My Antonia (1918) she had dealt with the robust creativity of women who lived close to the Nebraskan farmlands and to life. But A Lost Lady (1923), a portrait of moral dependency, began her criticism of a country she felt had lost its pioneering strength.

Theodore Dreiser

1871-1945Dreiser was born in Terre Haute, Indiana. His family was poor, and his childhood was blighted by misery and humiliation. His father was a religious bigot. The family moved constantly from town to town but Theodore Dreiser spent most of his childhood in Warshaw, Indiana, where he attended public school. Later his teacher enabled him to go for one year (1888-1889) to the Indiana University, which he had to leave because of money difficulties. He moved to Chicago, where he supported himself by doing odd jobs. Working in an estate office, in a laundry and as a rent collector for a wholesale furniture company, he had the possibility to store up impressions which later appeared in his novels.1892 Dreiser turned to journalism working as a newspaper reporter and editor in Chicago, St. Louis, Cleveland and Pittsburg. Then he moved to New York, where he attained work as a magazine editor.first significant work by Dreiser was his novel Sister Carrie (1900). This novel is a study of Carrie Meeber, an innocent Wisconsin girl, who comes to Chicago to find work and falls into an intricate network of temptation. The book, being realistic and true, mercilessly exposed bourgeois society. Hardly had the book appeared when it was pronounced immoral and withdrawn. Dreiser started his long fight against censorship and for the right of the novelist to present life as he saw it.ten years later, in 1911, Dreisers second novel Jennie Gerhardt was published. Like Sister Carrie this novel was a challenge to the moral claims of the American bourgeoisie. The publishing of Jennie Gerhardt roused further storm of criticism from readers and publishers who declared it immoral.Financier (1912) and The Titan (1914) together with The Stoic (published posthumously in 1947) form The Trilogy of Desire, a complete life story of an American capitalist, showing the unscrupulousness of the big capitalists. These three novels are the most highly documented and detailed of Dreisers works; they are also interesting as a panoramic picture of the industrial triumph at the end of the XIX century in America.Genius (1915) was banned soon after, like Sister Carrie and Jennie Gerhardt. It is the tragic story of a young painter Eugene Witla, who breaks down under the cruel injustice of the capitalist system. In Eugene Witla we can easily recognize the author himself, with the difference that Eugene finally broke down, while Theodore Dreiser continued his struggle to the last days of his life.American Tragedy (1925) is Dreisers best known novel. It is the story of a young American who is gradually corrupted by the morals and manners of American capitalist society and the lust of gain which reigns in the USA until he becomes a criminal and murderer. The significance of the novel is in the exposure of the American way of life with its contrast of poverty and wealth, corrupt bourgeois morals and political system.1928, after visiting the Soviet Union he published a book entitled Dreiser Looks at Russia.economic crisis of 1929-1932 in America was justly considered by Dreiser as a sign of the inevitable doom of American capitalism and he set forth his view in Tragic America (1931), a masterly description of the gross injustice of society. Exposure of the moral, political and economic criteria of his native land animated all of his notable novels. In them devastating influence and the inhumanity of American capitalism upon the life of the people is laid bare.years preceding World War I and those that followed it were marked by a crisis of his ideology and the dominant tendency of naturalism. Influenced by the growth of progressive forces throughout the world Dreiser gradually overcame the crises and reached a higher stage of realism.s other most popular works besides the already mentioned include: Free and Other Stories (1918), A Book about Myself (1922), The Color of a Great City (1923), A Gallery of Women (1929), America is Worth Saving (1941), The Bulwark (1946).American Tragedy. This novel may be regarded as the climax of Dreisers literary career. The plot of the novel is partly based on court records of an actual trial. But although the bare details are thus borrowed from reality, the implications and moral conclusions of the story are Dreisers own.novel is a criticism of the American Dream - the unlimited opportunity and quick success in a new country, where social barriers are flexible. The novel is a study of social classes and of an individuals effort to rise from one into another; it involves also a moral analysis of guilt in the manner of Dostoyevskys Crime and Punishment.Griffiths is a sensitive and unhappy youth whose parents are Kansas City street evangelists. Humiliated by his sordid family life and by the narrow bigoted morality his parents force upon him, he longs to escape into a finer and more rewarding environment. He works for a while as a bell-hop in a Kansas City Hotel, where he is vividly impressed with the contrasts between his own poverty and the opulence and importance of the hotel guests. Meanwhile a moral crisis presents itself. His sister Hester runs off with an actor who presently deserts her; she returns home pregnant, miserable, and without means. Clyde is moved by her plight, but instead of helping her he turns weakly to spend his money on Hortense Briggs, a vain and shrewdly calculating Clyde, several other bell-boys and several girls set off on an escapade in a borrowed car. The driver runs down a little girl and wrecks the car trying to escape from the police. Clyde flees to Chicago, changes his name in an effort to avoid his part of the responsibility for the incident. While working at a hotel in Chicago he meets his wealthy uncle Samuel Griffiths, who offers him a job in one of his collar factories in Lycurgus, New York. For a time Clydes fortunes seem to rise. But after a while he finds himself in a frustrating social situation. He is embarrassed in the company of his snobbish relatives, yet he is forbidden to approach the lower-class shop girls who work in his department. One of the girls, Roberta Alden, attracts him, and after a time he falls in love with her and their relations become intimate. But Clydes attention is soon transferred to another girl, the wealthy and socially prominent Sondra Finchley. Sondra is the key to all his ambitions; he imagines all his problems to be solved by marrying her. But Roberta is an obstacle on his way to climb up the social ladder; she is pregnant and she piteously demands Clyde to marry her. He is faced with a cruel moral dilemma: shall he stand by Roberta thus abandoning what may be his last chance to rise into the world? At that critical moment he reads a news account of a boating accident in which a girl is drowned while her companion's body is not found. Horrified at his own thoughts, he half-resolves to free himself by ending Robertas life. He lures her to a remote resort and rents a boat for a lake excursion. His preparations for the crime, however, are hopelessly incompetent. He has registered under two different false names at hotels, and now he betrays by several signs the fact that he does not intend to return to the hotel. At the moment of decision he almost loses his nerves. Noticing his perturbation, Roberta stands up in the boat, and reaches toward him; the boat capsizes accidentally, Clydes camera swings and strikes Roberta on the head. She falls into the water, she cant swim and she is drowned. Clyde swims ashore and flees in guilty terror across the country-side. He is not certain, whether he is guilty of Robertas death, but he knows in his own mind that he did not exert himself to save her during the seconds she floated on the water. Arrested, he is tried for murder. The defense argues that he is a morally deficient person who is not responsible for his shows how different people and institutions work. Clydes uncle cares more not about his nephew but about his name being involved in the case which can damage his reputation and business. Newspaper reporters rush to the home of Robertas parents to fish out hot new. They do not care about the feelings and sufferings of people. High officials need the victory in the trial and they do all possible to prove that Clyde has committed the murder deliberately. Otherwise they can lose the election campaign which was in full swing at the time. When no direct evidence was found, it had been finally manipulated. A hair was torn off from Robertas head and squeezed between the lenses of the camera, and then the camera was produced as a weapon of the murder.

Robert Frost

1874-1963Frost is the poet whom Americans most closely identify with New England. Long before he became known as the greatest American poet of his time, Robert Frost worked as a farmer, a bobbin boy in a Massachusetts mill, a shoemaker and a teacher in country schools.Frost was born in San Francisco, California on March 26, 1874. Frosts ancestors were Scotch-English. His mother was of a Scottish seafaring family of Orkneyan origin, a schoolteacher whose name appears in most records as Isabelle Moody (the proper spelling was Moodie). His father - William Prescott Frost became a teacher, then an editor, then a politician. His health did not stand the strains. When he died of tuberculosis in his early thirties, Robert was ten years old. The fatherless boy grew into the independent young man. His mother took him back to Massachusetts. He first saw the New England landscapes and knew the changing seasons that he would later describe with the familiarity of a native son. After high school there, Frost entered Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. He decided after a few months that he was not yet ready for higher education, and he returned to Lawrence to work in the cotton mills and to write. His verses, however, found little favor with magazine editors. He relished the sheer music of Edgar Poe, as much as the meaningfulness of Emerson. He saw his first poem printed in the Lawrence High School Bulletin. His mother was proud, but the rest of the family were alarmed. His grandfather said: No one can make a living at poetry. But I tell you what: well give you a year to make a go of it. And youll have to promise to quit writing if you cant make a success of it in a year. What do you say? Give me twenty - give me twenty, he said. In his early twenties, married to a pretty girl Elinor Miriam White and with a growing family, Frost finally began to feel the need for a more formal education than his random reading could provide. He took his family to Cambridge, Massachusetts, and to please his family he entered Harvard in his 22 and stayed there for only two years. Meanwhile, he earned a living as a schoolteacher, taking his mothers class away from her, and as an editor before deciding to try farming.later wrote of his decision to leave the University: Harvard had taken me away from the question of whether I could write or not.grandfather was disappointed, but he gave Robert a farm near Derry, New Hampshire. For ten years, Frost tilled the stony New Hampshire soil on thirty acres. But he decided that the concentration demanded by writing poetry did not mix with the round-the-clock physical effort of working the land. Discouraged, he returned to teaching for a few years; then in 1912 he sought a complete change of scene by selling his farm and taking his family to England.move turned out to be a wise one. Stimulated by meeting English poets, Frost continued to write poetry, though he found his subjects in New England. In the three years he spent abroad, he completed the two volumes that would make him famous - A Boys Will appeared in 1913 and another book of poetry, North of Boston was published in 1914. It was as simple as that. Too simple, perhaps - no influential friends, no publicity, nothing to win favour except the poetry. But Frost had to wait more than twenty years from the time of his first poem in a high school magazine to the time of his first book. When the first volume appeared the poet was thirty-eight years old. These collections included several poems that would stand among Frosts best-known works: The Tuft of Flowers, In Hardwood Groves, Mending Wall, The Death of the Hired Man, and After Apple-Picking. These poems were marked by a flinty realism and an impressive mastery of iambic rhythm, narrative dialogue, and the dramatic monologue.he returned home in 1915, he discovered that his success in England had spread to the United States. He was now an accomplished writer who had already extended the scope and character of American literature into the twentieth century.1916, the publication of Mountain Interval - a collection that included such favourites as The Road Not Taken, Birches solidified his fame. He chose his own way in life and poetry which he stressed upon in The Road Not Taken:

I shall be telling this with a sighages and ages hence:roads diverged in a wood, and I -took the one less traveled by,that has made all the difference.was rewarded with many prizes, including four Pulitzer Prizes for his books of poetry New Hampshire (1924), Collected Poems (1931), A Further Range (1937) and A Witness Tree (1943). He was also awarded numerous honorary degrees by Columbia, Dartmouth, Yale, Harvard and other colleges and universities. He was one of the few authors to receive the Gold Medal from the National Institute of Arts and Letters. He deserved the faithful attention of a wide readership. Frost continued to publish fine poetry for fifty years. He reached the height of his popularity after World War II. If America of the 20th century had a national poet, it was Frost.spent the rest of his life as a lecturer at a number of colleges, and as a public performer who, as he put it, liked to say rather than to recite his his later years became a character of his own creation - a lovable, fumbling old gent who could nevertheless pierce the minds and hearts of those able to see beyond his play-acting.also taught at Amherst, the University of Michigan, Harvard, and Dartmouth. He lectured and read at dozens of other schools. In 1960 at John F. Kennedys invitation, Frost became the first poet to read his works at the presidential inauguration. In 1962 he received the rarely awarded Congressional Medal from President Kennedy at a White House ceremony. Frosts poetry was popular not only among critics and intellectuals, but also among the general public. In his poems he painted vivid portraits of the New England landscape and captured the flavour of New England life using traditional forms and conversational language. Despite their apparent simplicity, however, his poems are filled with hidden meanings, forcing us to delve beneath the surface to fully appreciate his work. What counts in his poetry is not so much the, meaning as the shades of meaning. His lyrics are remarkable for their delicate and precise music. The love of country is not expressed in screaming or hysterical flag-waving but in a salvation of faith, in surrender to the land.Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Eveningwoods are these I think I know, house is in the village though; will not see my stopping here watch his woods fill up with snow.little horse must think it queer stop without a farmhouse near

Between the woods and frozen lake darkest evening of the his harness bells a shake ask if there is some mistake.only other sounds the sweep easy wind and downy flake.woods are lovely, dark, and deep, I have promises to keep, miles to go before I sleep, miles to go before I sleep.Gold Can Stays first green is gold hardest hue to hold. early leaf's a flower;only so an hour.leaf subsides to leaf, Eden sank to grief dawn goes down to day, gold can stay.other poet has been so successful in combining an outer lightness and an inner gravity. His verse has a growing intimacy: it radiates an honest neighbourliness in which wit and wisdom are joined. Frost was a person whose life was sometimes lifted to a high pitch of feeling and who had the gift of making others share his excitement. He thought in images and dreamt in fantasy; he lived by poetry. Whether in dialogue or in lyric, his poems are people talking. He knows how to say a great deal in a short space. Frost judges, but he rarely condemns; he is fundamentally serious but never pompous. He accepts the Worlds contradictions without being crushed by them. He said:were an epitaph to be my story, d have a short one ready for my own:would have written of me on my stone;had a lovers quarrel with the world.

Sherwood Anderson

1876-1941Anderson was born on September 13, 1876, in southern Ohio, the third of seven children. His father was a harness-maker, and his trade was being rendered obsolete by mass production. An easygoing man, the elder Anderson was given to telling tall tales and to heavy drinking.Sherwood often had to help out at home, his schooling was spotty. His mother died when he was fourteen, his father drifted out and away from the family forever, and Andersons formal education virtually came to an end. He never completed college and was obliged to work at a number of menial jobs.eventually became an advertising copywriter, and in the spirit of the new century and the new age, he extolled the world of business in his copy. Married and a family man, he bought a paint factory and continued to write copy ennobling the life he had chosen, even though he felt trapped in it. He was, he later said, following an adage often repeated to him: Get money. Money makes the mare go. On November 27, 1912, at the age of thirty-seven, Anderson left the factory muttering, leaving his co-workers with the idea that he had lost his mind.1916, at the age of forty, he produced Windy Mc Phersons Son, a novel about a man, who, like the author himself, abandons his business in order to find truth. In 1917 appeared Marching Men. But his early writings were only moderately successful.1919, Anderson published Winesburg, Ohio, a series of short stories about the people in a small mid-western town. It is now an American classic. But when it first appeared, it was called unclean, filthy, even by Theodore Dreiser, the popular realistic novelist who had helped Anderson bring his first works to the public.the first stories of Sherwood Anderson were published, they were the subjects of heated debate. The structure and focus of this collection of stories were inspired by Edgar Lee Masterss collection of poems called Spoon River Anthology. Anderson was concerned not with well-crafted plots in the traditional sense, but with revealing the secret needs and longings of twenty-two people from one small town. The stories are unified by their characters, by their setting, and by Andersons theory of the grotesque. According to the introduction to Winesburg, Ohio, a grotesque is someone who seizes a single truth out of life and lives by that truth alone. Tragically, these single-minded pursuits drive the characters into isolation. What made the stories in Winesburg shocking was that Anderson also explored the intimate thoughts of his characters. The result was a series of portraits that were honest, unflinching - and, at the time, painful for many to deal with.there are few dramatic events in the Winesburg stories, many readers dismissed them as non-stories. One member of the Chicago Group felt that the stories were so formless that Anderson should throw them away. The major complaint from readers, however, dealt with the unconventional subject matter, especially with the themes of sexuality and repression. One woman, who had attended a dinner party with Anderson, sent him a letter saying, ... having sat beside you and having read your stories, I feel that I should never be clean again. other famous story books are The Triumph of the Egg (1921) and Horses and Men (1923).his criticism of industry and of the American dream that money will bring happiness, Anderson proposed his own dream of love as happiness. He once wrote:

I began to gather these impressions. There was a thing called happiness toward which men were striving. They never got to it. All of life was amazingly accidental. Love, moments of tenderness and despair, came to the poor and the miserable as to the rich and successful. It began to seem to me that what was most wanted by all people was love, understanding. Our writers, our storytellers, in wrapping life up into neat little packages, were only betraying life.s subsequent novels Poor White (1920) and Dark Laughter (1925) mark a deterioration of his realistic art. Anderson is more than just a regionalist. He was among the first American authors to become interested in psychological motivation and the unconscious, with the themes of loneliness and alienation constantly recurring. As for himself, Anderson kept escaping for the rest of his life. Attractive to women, he married four times and travelled as far as Paris, where he met the writer Gertrude Stein who had an important influence on his work. He also met, in Chicago, a young writer who impressed him. It was Anderson who sent the young man - whose name was Ernest Hemingway - to Paris with a letter of introduction to Gertrude Stein. During the Depression and the New Deal that followed it, Andersons stories became oddly dated and irrelevant, though today a few of Andersons stories have taken their places as American classics. These include such later stories as The Egg from The Triumph of the Egg (1921) and Death in the Woods and Brother Death from Death in the Woods (1933).

Francis Scott Fitzgerald

1896-1940ever there was an author whose life and fiction were one, it was Scott Fitzgerald. The America into which Fitzgerald was born and in which he grew up clung to inherited restraints and proprieties. But it was to change dramatically under the impact of the First World War, when inhibition suddenly was shed for exuberance in the crazy, wonderful, irresponsible era of the 1920s. Scott Fitzgerald - handsome, charming, and uncommonly gifted - was not only part of this time; he thought about it and heard the sound of it and wrote about it in a way that gave it the name The Jazz Age. He made literary legend of it.Scott Key Fitzgerald was born in 1896 in St. Paul, Minnesota, the son of a father with claims to an aristocratic Maryland family. He was named for an ancestor, Francis Scott Key, the composer of the Star-Spangled Banner. His mother was the daughter of a rich Irish immigrant. The young Scott was a spoiled boy, a failure at school work and - to his own great disappointment - at sports. But he was a success at daydreaming and, while still in his teens, at writing stories and plays.was educated at Princeton University, which he entered in 1913, where he was active in the theatre and on campus publications until he dropped out in 1917. At Princeton University, he wrote one of the Triangle Club musical shows, contributed to the Nassau Literary Magazine, and befriended the serious writers Edmund Wilson and John Peele Bishop. When the United States entered the First World War in 1917, Fitzgerald left college for officers training school, yearning for heroic adventure overseas on the battlefields of France. He was never sent overseas, but in camp he began work on a novel, The Romantic Egoist. It was twice turned down by the publisher.of the army, Fitzgerald took a low-paying job he hated repairing car roofs at the Northern Pacific shops. I was an empty bucket, he said of the experience, so mentally blunted by the summers writing that Id taken a job. Then he sent his novel, rewritten and retitled This Side of Paradise, off to Scribners for the third time. In 1919, they agreed to publish it. Soon his autobiographical narrative, set mainly at Princeton, This Side of Paradise, appeared in 1920. It was a sensation. It was an immense popular success and Fitzgerald found himself the appointed spokesman for his generation, the so-called Jazz Age. He sensed the romantic yearnings of the Jazz Age and he put them in his fiction.second novel, The Beautiful and the Damned (1922), continued his exploration of the self-destructive extravagance of his times.concerns the world of youth, excited though somewhat cynical, and the parties and love affairs of the rich and the would-be-rich. He fell in love with Zelda Sayre, a rich, beautiful, talented, high-spirited but unbalanced woman, who lived near Montgomery, Alabama, where he was stationed when he enlisted in the U.S. Army. Although Scott courted her persistently, he had not nearly enough money to offer her the kind of marriage she wanted, and at first she turned him down. After he was discharged at wars end, he went to seek his literary fortune in New York in order to marry her. They married later in April 1920 and lived in New York, Paris, and on the French Riviera. In New York Zelda became the center of a round of parties, while Scott turned out scores of stories which appeared in major national magazines. Later these stories were collected in Flappers and Philosophers (1920).old, pre-war world with its Victorian code of behavior had been dumped in favor of a great, gaudy spree of new freedoms. Girls bobbed their hair and shortened their skirts, while boys filled their flasks with bootleg gin. To the wail of saxophones, couples danced the Charleston across the nation's dance floors. In young Fitzgeralds novel Tales of the Jazz Age (1922), the Jazz Age had found its definition.1922 he published his second novel, The Beautiful and Damned. After a stay in France, the Fitzgeralds returned to St. Paul, where their only child, a daughter named Frances, was born. Scott is also at the height of his popularity and power in the short stories of All the Sad Young Men (1926).announced to Maxwell Perkins, his editor at Scribners, that he was going to write something new, something extraordinarily beautiful and simple and intricately patterned. He fulfilled that ambition in The Great Gatsby, a romantic tragedy centering on the destructive power of the glamorous, seductive American Dream, his nearly flawless masterpiece, which was published in 1925. He also knew that between the peaks of joy were periods of sorrow. The Great Gatsby reflects Fitzgeralds deeper knowledge, his recognition that wanting to be happy does not insure ones being so and that pursuit of entertainment may only cover a lot of pain.Great Gatsby tells the story of James Gatz, a poor boy from the Middle West who dreams of success and elegance and finds their incarnation in a Louisville girl named Daisy Fay. When Gatz returns from the war he learns she has become Daisy Buchanan, married to a rich Chicagoan and leading a careless, sumptuous life on Long Island. The hero, now a successful bootlegger known as Jay Gatsby, hopes to win Daisy from what he believes is a loveless, unhappy marriage. The mysterious Jay Gatsby discovers the devastating cost of success in terms of personal fulfillment and love. The story ends in Gatsbys death, but we can see that it was his dream, his vulnerability and feeling, that are admirable, and that the Buchanans are insulated from lifes possibilities by their wealth and self-indulgence.central triumph of The Great Gatsby was its revelation of the rich in all their seductive luxury and heedlessness, accompanied by an implicit condemnation of their way of life. It showed wealth as a numbing, dehumanizing force that can destroy the heart. In a remarkably concise work, Fitzgerald probed deeply the ambiguities of the American dream. One of his masterful innovations in this novel - his manipulation of the point of view - matches the ambiguity of the books theme. The story is told by Nick Carraway, Daisys cousin. Nicks attitude, both engaged with the events and yet objective toward them, is often singled out as the ideal narrative point of view. Gatsby, with his vast new wealth acquired by breaking the Prohibition laws, represents extravagance and optimism and the desperate need of the outsider to belong. The Great Gatsby won some critical praise, but it was a financial disappointment.had to work even harder to keep up with the high cost of his and Zeldas international life. He turned out more pot-boiling short stories, mediocre in quality and written for money. In 1930, the tenth year of their marriage, Zelda suffered a mental breakdown and was to spend the rest of her life in and out of asylums. Hers was a search for both sanity and identity (her identity which seemed to have been devoured by Scotts productiveness). She aspired to be a dancer and a writer, and in 1932 produced her own novel, Save Me the Waltz. This was her thinly disguised account of her troubled marriage.s novel Tender Is the Night, the ambitious novel, which was published in 1934, was his rebuttal. Tender Is the Night reflects his personal tragedy: his own growing sense of failure and his wifes descent into madness. Zelda suffered a series of nervous breakdowns, his reputation as a writer declined. The hero of Tender Is the Night, Dick Diver, is a young psychiatrist, the protector and healer of the mad heroine, Nicole. Focusing on the decline of a young American psychiatrist following his marriage to a wealthy but unstable woman, the novel reflects Fitzgeralds awareness of the tragedy that can result from obsession with wealth and social status. However, the stock market crash of 1929 had put an end to Fitzgeralds era, and readers had lost interest in the problems of the expatriates like Dick Diver. Still, the book displays Fitzgeralds hard-won experience of life, the commitment to early dreams, the self-destructiveness of charm, and a whole generations craving for endless youth and irresponsibility. In its despair, Tender Is the Night was an epitaph for the Jazz Age.was Fitzgeralds epitaph as well. After its publication, he struggled with mounting debts, failing health, drinking, and depression. Following the stock market crash in 1929 which led to the hard times of the Depression, Fitzgeralds life changed dramatically. Fitzgerald lost his self-confidence and his public during the Depression Era. Financial difficulties forced him to seek work as a Hollywood screenwriter in the middle thirties. Despite illness and alcoholism he managed to write scenarios. When he could, he continued to do serious work. Through his love affair with Sheila Graham, a British journalist, he grew interested in the Hollywood producer Irving Thalberg and began work on a novel about him. He was at work on this novel, The Last Tycoon, in 1940 when he died in Hollywood of heart failure, down and used up. The Last Tycoon was completed by his friend Edmund Wilson and was published after Fitzgeralds death in 1941 to wide critical praise.

William Faulkner

1897-1962are now unanimous in their opinion that William Faulkner was one of the greatest of all American novelists of the twentieth century.was born on September 25, 1897 in New Albany, Mississippi. His great grandfather fought in the Civil War, and he wrote romantic fiction. Later he served the model for Colonel John Sartoris in William Faulkners novels. I want to be a writer like my great-granddaddy said William Faulkner when he was nine. He was speaking of Colonel William Clerk Falkner, the family founder. (William Faulkner restored the lost letter u in the family name). Named after him, Faulkner grew up feeling at every turn the giants tread of this first William: slave-owner, planter, brigadier in the militia, lawyer, railroad king, (he built the first railroad in our country, said little William of his great-grandfather). The Faulkners were the owners of the railroad built by the writers great grandfather, and then the owners of a cottonseed oil mill, and ice plant, a livery stable, and an agency selling petroleum. William learned early to ride and to shoot game. His story The Bear, though not strictly autobiographical, is based on his recollections of autumn days hunting in the woods.attended high school in Oxford, Mississippi. Instead of finishing school and graduating, he had been working for a year as a bookkeeper in a bank. Faulkner hung around the University of Mississippi in Oxford where his father was a business manager.the outbreak of World War I, the U.S. Army rejected him because he failed to meet their height and weight requirements. However, in 1918 Faulkner enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force and trained for flight duty, only to see the war end before he was commissioned. He loved flying, and as soon as he could afford, he bought a light plane. After he was demobilized, Faulkner returned to Oxford and spent there over a year as a registered student at Old Miss. But he disliked the way literature was taught there and dropped out to read on his own. He also wrote verse and published the collection The Marble Faun in 1924. 1924, he left Oxford for New Orleans, where he made the acquaintance of some members of the New Orleans literary circle, including Sherwood Anderson who had attracted much attention with the publication of Winesburg, Ohio (1919), his study of small-town life. Impressed and encouraged by Anderson, Faulkner tried his hand at fiction.the six months he spent in New Orleans Faulkner published a number of stories in a little magazine and wrote his first novel Soldiers Pay (1926), a self-conscious story about the lost generation. Anderson recommended the book to his publisher, and Faulkners career as a novelist began. In 1927 his second novel Mosquitoes appeared. Thereafter Faulkner wrote with a tireless energy.the next three years, Faulkner found his great theme: he began writing about the decaying Southern family, the younger members of which are imbued with the sense of futility and alienation, unable to shake off the weight of the nobler past, the American South as a microcosm for the universal themes of time, the passions of the human heart, and the destruction of the wilderness. Faulkner saw the South as a nation unto itself, with a strong sense of its noble past and an array of myths by which it clung to its pride, despite the humiliating defeat of the Civil War and the acceptance of the distasteful values of an industrial North. Faulkner started to explore these themes in 1929 with the publication of Sartoris (1929) and The Sound and the Fury (1929), two novels published within months of each other. Sartoris was a fairly conventional novel set in mythical Yoknapatawpha, Faulkners own little postage stamp of native soil. Imaginary Yoknapatawpha is similar in many ways to the actual impoverished farmland, with its red clay hills, that rings Oxford, Mississippi, home of the states university. It was there that Williams father, Murray Falkner, ran a livery stable and later became the universitys business manager. William Faulkner lived and wrote there throughout most of his life. The aristocratic Sartorises resemble Faulkners own ancestors. Colonel Bayard Sartoris, for example, was patterned after Faulkners great-grandfather, who rose from rural poverty to command the Second Mississippi Regiment, built a railroad, wrote a best-selling novel, and was murdered on the street by his business partner.Sound and the Fury was a milestone in American literature, due to Faulkners bold manipulation of point of view and of its stream-of-consciousness narrative technique. It is a tragic story of the decline and fall of the Compson family. The Compsons incorporate some characteristics of the authors immediate family. The novel is rather experimental in its technique, and falls in four sections. Only one section, the fourth, is told from a conventional point of view.Faulkners novels were not a commercial success, he was able to make a living by writing short stories, most of which were published in the magazine Saturday Evening Post. This enabled him to marry, his childhood sweetheart Estelle Oldham after she divorced her first husband, and to buy a pre-Civil War mansion.the decade which followed, Faulkner produced a succession of dazzling books: in 1930 appeared his comedy As I Lay Dying that tells of the poor-white Bundren family and its efforts to bring the body of its matriarch, Addie, back to the town of Jefferson for burial. The novel reveals these humble people as more enduring than their social betters. It was followed by Sanctuary (1931), a tale about the rape and corruption of a Southern belle, and Light in August (1932), a poetic work in which Faulkner first confronted the Souths tragic legacy of racism. Its about complex and violent relations between a white woman and a black man. The novel concerns the Burden family and explores the problem of racism through the character of the protagonist, Joe Christmas. Although he can pass as white, Joe is regarded as a mulatto; his failure to find a place in either white or black society leads to his murder.success of these novels brought him fame and an invitation to come to Hollywood to write screenplays. Thus appeared films like Road to Glory, To Have and Have Not, The Big Sleep, and Land of the Pharaohs.1932 Faulkner continued to publish novels but this was not as prolific period as the first one. The principal product of the writer in this period was, perhaps, a novel Absalom, Absalom! (1936) about the rise of a self-made plantation owner and his tragic fall through racial prejudice and a failure to love. Then appeared The Unvanquished (1938). This was followed by The Hamlet (1940), the first volume of a trilogy about the Snopes clan. These works reveal Faulkner as equally skillful in the tragic and the comic modes. He portrayed the South accurately, perceptively, and with a poignant ambivalence - on the one hand affectionate, on the other critical. He once said of the South, Well, I love it and I hate it.1942 he published Go Down, Moses, a novel in the form of linked stories, about several generations in the McCaslin family, of white, black, and mixed blood. It was a failure upon publication, and was followed by six years silence. It was due to the paperback publication The Portable Faulkner which appeared in 1946 that the Southern writer was reintroduced; a public was ready to appreciate his talent. Faulkner was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters; in 1951 he travelled to Stockholm to accept the Nobel Prize for Literature, following the publication of Intruder in the Dust (1948); in 1951 Faulkner won a National Book Award for his Collected Stories, and in 1955 - the Pulitzer Prize and a second National Book Award for A Fable (1954). After World War II Faulkner also published Requiem for a Nun (1951), The Town (1957), The Mansion (1959), and a high-hearted comedy The Reivers (1962), set in the period of Faulkners youth. The Hamlet, The Town and The Mansion picture the Snopeses - Faulkners unforgettable portrayal of a sprawling clan of irresponsible, depraved, social ambitious varmints, who rise from the dust and cheat their way to respectability and wealth, destroying the old values of aristocracy and peasantry alike. Faulkner used his native state of Mississippi for the geography of Yoknapatawpha County, his fictional microcosm of the world. An agrarian by disposition, he, like other Southerners, saw in the incursion of commercialism a violent disruption of old virtues and of unselfish and immediate relationship to the land. Recounting mans false steps in history, he saw the Civil War as a guidepost in the culmination of a self-destructive exploitation. Faulkners prose could be crystal clear, but at his most ambitious he constructed a highly involved syntax to represent the complexities that man must disentangle. Read as metaphors, his fictions came to stand for the perplexed condition of mankind, not simply in America but in the entire modern world. The Sound and the Fury, As I Lay Dying, Light in August, and Absalom, Absalom! represent his most difficult prose but also his best. Faulkners troubled picture of what has happened to America is often disturbing to his countrymen and bewildering to non-Americans; but in principle his frankness not only demonstrates a freedom for independent thought but also gives evidence that the same belief in the potentialities of the American dream that characterized the prose of authors like Thoreau still maintains itself in the felt agony that man is less than he can be.Faulkner died on July 6, 1962 of heart attack at his home in Oxford, Mississippi, a month after The Reivers was published. He had become an international celebrity; his works had been translated into all the major European languages, and also into Japanese.Sound and the Fury. The novel is a story of a southern aristocratic family of Compsons. The title and the idea of the novel become clear, when the reader realizes that the words are taken from Shakespeares tragedy Macbeth:s but a walking shadow, a poor player, struts and frets his hour upon the stage, then is heard no more: it is a taleby an idiot, full of sound and fury, consists of four sections from which we learn about the life of four children of the Compson family: Benjy, Quentin, Jason, their sister Caddy and their parents. The first part is the monologue of Benjy, a mentally diseased boy, an idiot whose thoughts rapidly flicker between present and various levels of the past in his morbid imagination. The second section is the monologue of his brother Quentin, a hypersensitive young man, a student of Harvard University. To give him a chance to study the family has lost the last property they had - they sold the pasture. In the third part the fate of the family is pictured by Jason, a moral psychopath. He embodies the features of the new bourgeois order which replaced patriarchal system. He is egoistic, vulgar and cruel, mean, and deprived of good human qualities. Quentin is brave and emotional, Jason is a coward.fourth part is narrated by the author himself.Compson is the primal force of the book. Faulkner chronicles the decline of the American South through his experiences. Benjy struggles to articulate his vision of life. Though at first his story seems to have no real sense and his thoughts are tangled, readers learn much about the old, but poverty-stricken family which has lost all their wealth and dignity. The author sympathizes with the father of the family. He is clever, but not physically strong and skeptical. He has his definite opinion about the time, history, man and society. His wife is a contrast to him. She is physically strong but is constantly complaining of her poor health. Her brother is a good-for-nothing man and a drunkard into the bargain.glimpses from the pear tree the adult world of her parents. It is a bold disappointment. Theyre not doing anything in there, she complains. Just sitting in chairs and looking. Poised on her branch outside, Caddy looks into a rotting house where there exists no credible authority. Her father stares at his decanter while her neurotic mother lies in an upstairs room, hand perpetually over forehead.parents the children are left to run wild. Through their neglect and inactivity, the Compson parents emotionally mutilate each of their children. They all feel some sort of hunger. To satisfy her hunger, Caddy becomes mother to Benjy, and lover to her brother Quentin. Seeking the love she cannot find at home, because her mother is too ill to supply it, her father too drunk and misogynist, Caddy is seduced by Dalton Ames who abandons her. Her parents do all to conceal their daughter's disgrace. They marry her to Sydney Herbert Head, briefly. He leaves her when he finds out that she is pregnant. To save the face of the family Quentin says that he fathered the future child. I have committed, incest I said Father it was I it was not Dalton Ames. Thinking that the time itself created all the misfortunes of the family, Quentin tries to stop the time going - he breaks his watch, a gift of his father. In his sexual jealousy for his sister Quentin kills himself. Jason hardens in his meanness. He appropriates the money which Caddy gets to feed and bring up her little daughter Quentin (named in honour of her brother). He tries to send Benjy to the has degraded economically, physically, and morally. The only moral centre is someone not of their blood: the black servant Dilsey and her son Luster. Dese funny folks, says Dilseys son, Luster. Adod, I aint none of a kind, humane and honest woman. She cares about Benjy. She is bold enough to tell Jason about his meanness.

Ernest Hemingway

1899-1961American authors have offered as powerful a definition of the twentieth-century hero as Ernest Hemingway. Hemingways fiction presents a strict code of contemporary heroism. It centers on disillusionment with the conventions of an optimistic, patriotic society and a belief that the essence of life is Violence, from which there is no refuge. As Hemingway saw it, the only victory that can be won from life lies in a graceful stoicism, a willingness to accept gratefully lifes few moments of pleasure.launched a new style of writing, so forceful in its simplicity that it became a measure of excellence around the world.Scott Fitzgeralds, Hemingways own life bore a notable resemblance to the lives of his fictional characters.Hemingway was born in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park, Illinois, on July 21, 1899, and was educated at the local public schools. With his father, a physician, he spent much time hunting and fishing, and developed his love of nature and his sense of the hard rules for behaviour in the wild. All this acquainted him early with the kinds of virtues, such as courage and endurance, which were later reflected in his fiction. Growing up, Ernest boxed and played football devotedly, but he also wrote poetry, short stories, and a column for the school newspaper. His subjects were often war and its effects on the people, or contests such as hunting and bullfighting, which demand stamina and courage.finishing high school in 1917, Hemingway became a reporter for the Kansas City Star. Then, after an unsuccessful attempt to enlist in the army because of the boxing injury to his eye, he volunteered for Red Cross ambulance corps and was sent to the Italian front in World War I, where he was wounded in the knee. This wound was a central episode in both his real and his creative life. During his long convalescence in an Italian hospital, he fell in love with a nurse who became the model for Catherine Barkley, the heroine of his novel A Farewell to Arms.the armistice in 1918, he returned to Michigan.avid big game hunter, sport fisherman, and bullfight aficionado, Hemingway continued to have adventures and remained a productive and successful writer, transforming his observations and experiences into novels and short stories throughout his last three decades.1921, newly married and with a commission as a reporter for the Toronto Star, Hemingway set off for Paris. Here Hemingway worked at the craft of fiction and met other important writers, among them Scott Fitzgerald, James Joyce, and Ezra Pound. But most important, he met Gertrude Stein. She read all of his works and advised him to prune his description and to concentrate. Hemingway took her advice and spoke fervently of-writing the truest sentence that you know. His journalism and the influence of Gertrude Stein helped to form his literary style - lucid, pure, and simple. From Gertrude Stein he also developed his sense of the lost generation, men and women struggling bravely to find value in a world deprived of faith. His first book, Three Stories & Ten Poems, appeared in 1923 and was followed closely by In Our Time. His experience of coming to terms with the war is reflected in his story The End of Something. Nick Adams, who sits alone in the woods, is escaping the world of men, trying to restore himself from both a physical and a psychological shattering. He is trying to hold on to his sanity.books, along with The Torrents of Spring (1926), a parody of his friend Sherwood Andersons work, drew scant notice. Then, late in 1926, he published a novel about the pain and disillusionment which the heroes associate with life in the modern world. This was The Sun Also Rises. The novel brought Hemingway widespread critical attention and international acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic. Gertrude Steins remark, You are all a lost generation, was the novel's epigraph, and the book did reveal the postwar epoch to itself. Many American readers of Hemingways age embraced it as a portrait of their shattered lives.the next few years, he went on to write an even more powerful and successful novel, A Farewell To Arms (1929). This is the beautifully told, moving story of Frederick Henry, a wounded ambulance driver. While recuperating in an Italian hospital, Henry falls in love with an English nurse, Catherine Barkley. Returned to the front, Henry is disillusioned with the war, makes his famous separate peace, and deserts. He flees to Switzerland with Catherine, who is now pregnant with his child. Fredericks farewell to Catherine just before her death is one of the most famous passages in American fiction, juxtaposing the writers cynicism about the human experience with the characters romantic love.pursuing adventure, Hemingway traveled the world, hunting in Africa, deep-sea fishing in the Caribbean, and skiing in Idaho and Europe.the early 1930s he brought out two books of nonfiction. Death in the Afternoon (1932) revealed his fascination with bullfighting; Green Hills of Africa (1935) did the same for big game hunting. Significantly, both books centered on the art of killing. His next novel, To Have and Have Not (1937), was dismissed by critics as unskillful. It was followed by the play, The Fifth Column. In 1940, just as the literary world was writing Hemingway off as a has-been, he published another masterpiece, the novel For Whom the Bell Tolls.outbreak of World War II drew Hemingway back into uniform, officially a correspondent. During one battle, a First Army commander reported that Hemingways band of adventurers was sixty miles in front of the Americans advancing line. When the Allies at last reached Paris in 1944, they found that Hemingway had preceded them and had already liberated the bar at the Ritz Hotel.1952, Hemingways celebrated literary accomplishments and his continuous pursuit of excitement and dangers, producing yet another widely acclaimed novel in that year, The Old Man and the Sea which won the Pulitzer Prize and helped earn him the Nobel Prize for literature in 1954. It tells of Santiago, a Cuban fisherman, old and down on his luck, who ventures far out in the Gulf Stream and hooks a giant marlin. Santiago battles the fish for two days and nights, and he is towed ever farther out to sea. Although he finally succeeds in subduing the great fish and lashing it to the side of his boat, the sharks tear at the carcass until he is left with only its skeleton. The tale has been interpreted as Hemingways metaphor for life: a vision of the hero, weighed down by the years, but still able to use his skill to taunt fate and so win a kind of victory from it.1954, when Hemingway won the Nobel Prize, he now divided his time between the house he had built in Ketcham, Idaho, and his restless travels all over the world: to Cuba, Venice, Spain, and deteriorated, and periods of elation alternated with episodes of severe depression. After a visit to the Mayo Clinic for treatment, he returned to Idaho. On July 2, 1961, he rose early and with two charges of a double- barreled shotgun, he killed himself. He put life back on the page, said critic Alfred Kazin, made us see, feel, and taste the gift of life .... To read Hemingway was always to feel more alive.s style of writing is striking. He is a great master of the pause. This is when we see how the action of his story continues during the silences, during the time his characters say nothing. This action is always full of meaningperfected the art of conveying emotion with few words. In contrast to the Romantic writers, who often emphasize abundance and even excess, Hemingway is a Classicist in his restraints and understatements. He believed that the strongest effect came with an economy of means.

Robert Penn Warren

1905-1989Penn Warren is one of the most versatile, prolific and distinguished writers of the twentieth century. He has written poetry, stories, novels, plays, criticism, essays, textbooks, and a biography.was born in Guthrie, Kentucky. When he was sixteen he entered Vanderbilt University, where he began to write poetry. After graduating from Vanderbilt in 1925, he studied at the University of California, Yale and Oxford. In 1935 he became one of the founding editors of the literary magazine The Southern Review.Penn Warren stood out as a masterful rhetorician, a poet, and an influential critic and pedagogue. He wrote a series of deliberately melodramatic novels in which both past and present conflicts of the South were made to serve universally: Night Rider (1939), and At Heavens Gate (1943), All Kings Men (1947) which won him the first Pulitzer Prize.Pen Warren is also the author of the collections of poems Thirty Six Poems (1935), Eleven Poems on the Same Theme (1942), Selected Poems (1923-1943), Brother to Dragons (1935), a drama in verse Promises, Poems (1954-1957), which won him the Pulitzer Prize in 1959. In 1980 he won a third Pulitzer Prize for Now and Then (1979) - another collection of poetry. the Kings Men (1946), a study of political morality based on the career of Huey Long, is one of the memorable novels of the century. The novel won Penn Warren another Pulitzer Prize. It is an account of vicious politics of a Southern State governor.has consistently used southern settings and characters in both his poetry and prose, but at the same time he focuses on universal themes. In his work he emphasizes love of the land, continuity between generations, and the need for self-knowledge and fulfillment in an often violent world.the Kings Men is a political satire. It unfolds a broad panorama of political life in a Southern State, throwing light on the dirty intrigues and machinations resorted to by those who aspire to secure a higher position in the administration. Here Warren touches upon one of the most fateful questions of American experience, - the sources, uses and abuses of great political power in a democratic society and the individuals responsibility to that society and to himself. It is a general belief that the novel drew partly from the career of Huey Long, the governor of Louisiana in 1935, one of the most bizarre and audacious figures in the 20th century public life in America. Warren himself denied are narrated by Jack Burden, a newspaper reporter, the Bosss political aide and confidential agent. The central figure of the book is Willie Stark, the Boss. Formerly a simple peasant boy from upstate Louisiana, he rises from the position of County Treasurer in Mason City to that of Governor of the state. Striving for power Willie Stark shuns from no means to achieve his end. Willie Stark is a man who exercises a tremendous imaginative appeal over the people, but his methods are dirty. To achieve his aim he bribes, threatens, buys and sells men, uses blackmail and violence, employs various techniques of reputation-blackening. Willie is a complex person, not a simple demagogue, as some critics think. Power-mad and dictatorial, he seemingly works for the good of the poor folk. He is a man with a mission, with a would-be strong social conscience and a burning desire to bring to the rednecks their full share of the blessings of modern society. He has an avid taste for power which corrupts him and brings about his downfall.Burden, the protagonist, is a descendent of an old Southern family. He throws himself into the main currents of politics and power to escape from the atmosphere of his former aristocratic entourage and its purposeless and meaningless life. He becomes the aide of a highly untraditional governor. Willie Stark represents for Jack Burden the example of power effectively used, of a driving force that can give purpose and meaning to life. Wille is crude, uncultivated, not a gentleman, has no ancestors, nor traditions. But he lives in the present, not in the past. Besides, Jack believes in Willies efforts to give the poor people a fairer share of the benefits of government. He is convinced that Willie is on the side of the right. Thus Willies attraction for Jack is both ideological and by Robert Penn Warren are The Circus in the Attic (1947), World Enough and Time (1959), a description of a mysterious murder in Frankfort, historical novels of the Civil War period The Cave (1959), and Wilderness (1961).Penn Warren is also known as a critic, scholar and teacher. He taught at Louisiana State University and the universities of Michigan and Yale. He composed textbooks that were most influential in shaping the teaching of English in America.

literature modernism prose drama

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Speak on the American literary realism in the first half of the XX-th century. Name the significant poets and the main themes they touch upon in the poetry. Comment on Imagism, an important literary movement of the time. Historical fiction became popular in the Depression, didnt it? Why? Name the representatives of the group as writers of fiction (western novel, short stories, novel of manners).

. What is the theme of Dreisers first novel Sister Carrie? What idea dominates Dreisers novel An American Tragedy, and why did he choose as the main characters the most ordinary of American youths? What is similar in the ambitions of Clyde and Roberta? Why is Dreiser considered the leading writer of the first half of the XX-th century?

. Where did Robert Frost live in the United States? How does Robert Frost describe nature in his poems? (Analyse some of his comparisons in the poems printed in this book.) How did farm life influence his poetry? What are his themes? What was peculiar to Frost's style? What did Robert Frost say about the role of art in life?

. Say a few words about Sherwood Andersons biography. Anderson is more than just a regionalist. - Why? Name his chief literary works and the themes they deal with.

. Say a few words about the life and the work of Francis Fitzgerald. Were his novels autobiographical? Where did Fitzgerald find themes for the fiction? Speak on the subject of The Great Gatsby.

. The influence of what literary trend is felt in early Faulkners works? What is the central factor of Faulkners interest in the 20-s? What theme are the books about Jefferson belong to? What novels describe the race problems of the USA? Why did Faulkner compare his characters with the characters in the Bible? How do the critics characterize the creative work of the writer?

. Why was Hemingway considered to be one of the most experienced journalists of the 20th century? How did his first short stories come to be written? What was Hemingway's social viewpoint? What were his ideas about literature and the writers? Why did Hemingway search for new forms in literature? What is meant by the concise Hemingway style? What do the mountain snows symbolize? Comment on Hemingways war books. Why did war become the main subject in Hemingways works? Give a short account of the novel A Farewell to Arms. Characterize the hero and the heroine of the novel. Tell the story of The Old Man and the Sea. Characterize Santiago. How does Hemingway see the moral strength of man in the battles of life?

. Give a brief account of Robert Penn Warrens life and literary work. Comment on the subject of All the Kings Men. Name the main heroes of the novel and characterize them. What other branches are there to Warrens literary activity?


in the United States today can look at a rich heritage of their own. Contemporary readers are well aware of such novelists as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mark Twain, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, short story writers Edgar Allan Poe, Willa Gather, Eudora Welty, poets Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Langston Hughes, and playwrights Eugene ONeill and Thornton Wilder.the highly acclaimed novelists of the time is Saul Bellow who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1976. His novel Herzog, about an average man seeking truth in a world that overwhelms him, shows clear parallels with James Joyces Ulysses. Ralph Ellisons Invisible Man, about a young black man searching for identity, parallels Joyces Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.contemporary novelists of stature include Carson McCullers, Robert Penn Warren, Norman Mailer, Bernard Malamud, John Updike, Flannery OConnor, Joyce Carol Oates, Anne Tyler, and Alice Walker. Many of these novelists have written short stories as well. John Cheever (1912-1982), a respected novelist, won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1979 for his collected short stories, many of which concern suburban life. Cheevers major story collections are The Way Some People Live (1943), The Enormous Radio (1953), The Housebreaker of Shady Hill (1958), Some People, Places, and Things That Will Not Appear in My Next Novel (1961), The Brigadier and the Golf Widow (1964), and The World of Apples (1973). These collections of stories comprise a running social history of suburbia. Cheever won the National Book Award for The Wapshot Chronicle (1957), a comic saga of a New England family. His other novels, which show less attention to realism and more to the fantastic, include The Wapshot Scandal (1964), Bullet Park (1969), and Falconer (1977). of the most well-known political fiction writers is Gore Vidal (b.1925), the author of political novels Washington DC (1967), Burr (1973), and 1876 (1985). Just as realism and romanticism have tended to merge in recent literature, so have fiction and non-fiction. Truman Capotes In Cold Blood used fictional techniques to analyse a real and seemingly senseless crime. E.L.Doctorow in his novel Ragtime combined historical figures with purely fictional characters.attention has been paid recently to the place of non-fiction in the literary hierarchy. The essay has always been considered an important literary form. James Baldwin and John McPhee are accomplished essayists. Among the many notable longer works of non-fiction are Paul Therouxs The Great Railway Bazaar, N.Scott Momadays The Names, and Barry Lopezs Arctic Dreams.number of the famous prewar poets continued to publish extensively after the war. Robert Frost, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, E.E.Cummings, William Carlos Williams, and Ezra Pound all produced major collections of their works.of the most respected contemporary poets is Robert Lowell, a great nephew of the poet James Russell Lowell. Robert Lowells poetry is traditional in form, but its range in theme, method, and tone is breathtaking. Theodore Roethke is a master of poetic rhythm and James Dickey is a poet and novelist whose southern heritage is of great importance in his work. The other poets of note are Elizabeth Dishop and Gwendolyn Brooks. A number of small literary movements have developed since World War II. These movements are often referred to as Postmodernism. Some writers have continued to develop the fragmentary approach of the Modernists. Others have tried blending realism and fantasy in their works, and still others have experimented with radically different fictional forms and techniques. The poetry has varied dramatically in form, style, and content. Free verse has remained a dominant poetic form.

John Steinbeck

1902-1968Sinclair Lewis, John Steinbeck is held in higher critical esteem outside the United States than in it in his time, largely because he received the Nobel Prize for literature in 1963 and the international fame it confers.the 1930s, the Great Depression cost millions of people their jobs and shook their faith in the American promise. Big business and the corporate farm seemed untouched by hard times. They were angrily perceived by many as impersonal and indifferent to human hardship. novelists of the time were moved by this sense of injustice and turned their pens to a by-product of the Depression known as the protest novel. Among these writers, John Steinbeck was the most widely praised and successful.was born in Californias Salinas Valley in 1902, the son of a county treasurer and a schoolteacher. Although he graduated from high school and spent some time at Stanford University, in between various jobs, he took more pride in the many jobs he held as a young man than in his formal education. After leaving the University he spent the next five years drifting across the country, reading, writing, and working at odd jobs. He worked as a hod carrier, fruit picker, apprentice painter, laboratory assistant, care-taker, surveyor, and writer. He wrote seventeen novels in all, in addition to stories, plays, film-scripts, and a great deal of journalism.had little success as a writer until 1935 when he published his third novel Tortilla Flat, a humorous story about a Mexican-American colony in Monterey. Steinbecks first major success came in 1937 with Of Mice and Men, a short, best-selling novel which Steinbeck himself adapted into a Broadway play and motion picture. It is a tale of two drifters, farm-hands, migrants, George and the powerful but mentally handicapped Lennie whose dream of owning their farm ends in tragedy. Steinbeck portrayed their odd friendship with great sympathy and understanding. Steinbeck changed a pathetic situation into an affirmative acceptance of lifes brutal conflicts, along with its possibilities for fellowship and courage.followed this success by joining some Oklahoma farmers known as Okies - who were embarking with great hope to California. Steinbeck lived and worked with them over the next two years, experiencing first-hand the disappointment and injustice they encountered. The result was his strongest and most enduring, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Grapes of Wrath (1939), which follows the travails of a poor Oklahoma family that loses its farm during the Depression and travels to California to seek work. Family members suffer conditions of feudal oppression by rich landowners. The Grapes of Wrath tells of the Joad family and their forced migration from the Dust Bowl of Oklahoma to California, the region that promised work at decent wages and a chance to buy land. Once arrived, however, the Joads find only the exploitation and poverty of labor camps. Gradually they learn the real meaning of the term Okies - Oklahoma farmers, dispossessed of their land and forced to become migrant farmers in California, people who never even had a chance.Grapes of Wrath was an angry book that spoke out on behalf of the migrant workers. Steinbeck sharply criticized a system that bankrupted thousands of farmers and turned them from their own land, making them into paid help for the big growers. When the novel appeared, it was greeted with outbursts of praise and condemnation, and it became the most widely read of all the protest novels of the 1930s. The book leaves the reader with the feeling which Steinbeck wanted to instill - that the poor can endure by helping one another, and perhaps also that they can expect no help from anyone else.Grapes of Wrath won the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize in 1940 and established Steinbeck as one of the most highly regarded writers of his day. Steinbeck produced several more successful works during his later years, including Cannery Row (1945), The Pearl (1947), East of Eden (1952), and Winter of Our Discontent (1961).the end of his life, Steinbeck achieved a gratifying success with the award of the Nobel Prize in 1963 and with the publication in that year of Travels with Charley, a nostalgic account of a trip across America with his aged poodle Charley. But his reputation is grounded on those earlier novels which portray California as the real and symbolic land of American promise.creates vivid portraits of the landscape and demonstrates how people are shaped and manipulated by their environments. John Steinbecks themes come from the poverty, desperation, and social injustice that he witnessed during the Great Depression of the 1930s, a time when many people suffered under conditions beyond their control. His works reflect his belief in the need for social justice and his hope that people can learn from the suffering of others. Though many of his characters suffered tragic fates, they almost always managed to retain a sense of dignity throughout their struggles.

James Albert Michener

1907-1997Albert Michener was born on February 3, 1907. He never knew his real parents and was brought up by a Quaker widow in Pennsylvania. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II and made his first trip across the Pacific at that time. His book Tales of the South Pacific won the Pulitzer Prize in 1947. Despite his substantial commercial success, he was known to be a humble man and was an active philanthropist.Albert Michener is a Pulitzer prize-winning author renowned for his historical epics. One of the world's most revered and best-loved novelists, Michener was one of Americas most respected senior citizens. A prolific novelist and relentless researcher, Michener wrote many books.many beloved works include Tales of the South Pacific, which was adapted for Broadway and film as South Pacific, Caravans, Centennial, The Drifters, The Fires of Spring, Hawaii, Poland, Texas, Return to Paradise, Recessional and The Source.. As the new young director of the Palms, a Florida retirement home, Andy Zorn suffers no shortage of loving support and wise advice from his elders, a group of passionate, outspoken residents who refuse to accept the passive roles that society and family have handed the Palms, a Florida retirement center, Recessional follows several residents over the course of a year as their individual narratives - humorous, moving, or sometimes triumphant - unfold. Chris Mallory reluctantly relinquishes his drivers license at the age of ninety, but refuses to hang up his dancing shoes. The Palms five self-appointed elders, all once outstanding in their respective careers, hotly debate current affairs and plot a daring flying adventure; Laura Oliphant, former head of a private school for girls, never stops learning and never stops educating others, especially about the natural wonders of Florida; and Reverend Helen Quade, the Palmss unofficial pastor, finds an unexpected romance. We meet, too, the families of some of the Palmss residents - among them an independent, unconventional young woman who owes her success to the aunt who encouraged her always to follow her own instincts; and the devoted children of one resident who grapple with difficult decisions about their elderly mothers final days. When they are confronted with any important question that affects their closely knit community, the Palms residents band together and offer the new director, Andy Zorn, both their support and their suggestions. Zorn, a young doctor running from a past scandal, has been hired by geriatric mogul John Taggart to revitalize the Palms, a Tampa retirement community thats fallen into a minor malaise of both profits and morale. Unjust malpractice suits have driven Andy Zorn, M.D., from obstetrics, and he begins a new life as director of a retirement community, The Palms, more than a thousand miles away from his Chicago home. The Palms offers well-off retirees comfortable apartments as well as nursing home and hospice facilities if the need arises. Andys main job is to turn this place into a moneymaking proposition for its wealthy owner.applies his research to the ravages of old age that plague the Palms population, but the novel is overloaded with details which often seem unnecessary for the story hes telling. Some episodes and characters are touching: the tale of a seemingly mismatched couple in which the husband cares for the wife after she contracts Alzheimers; a series of stories about four elder statesmen in the home who conspire to build and fly an airplane; and the saga of a widow who must make some difficult decisions after a biopsy for breast cancer; the romantic subplot between Zorn and a handicapped woman whom he rescues after a car accident. The doctors efforts to provide care for an AIDS patient outside the home have similar problems with realism - the worst offense being a series of passages told from the perspective of a rattlesnake.

Irwin Shaw

1913-1984of the most prominent American novelists, short-story writer and playwright of the twentieth century, Irwin Shaw (real name Irwin Gilbert Shamforoff), was born on 27 February, 1913 in Bronx, New York in the family of immigrants from Russia. Irwin left Brooklyn College after failing in freshman mathematics, worked in a cosmetic factory, a department store and a furniture company as a message boy. During his life he tried different other jobs - he worked as a driver, a professional football player, and a teacher.his return to the college he worked in the students magazine and wrote plays for a dramatic society. After graduation from the college in 1934 with a bachelors degree he went to Hollywood to create screenplays. Later he remembered that he had been writing under a great influence of Ernest Hemingway whom he considered to be his literary teacher.World War II Irwin Shaw served in the American Army, fought in Northern Africa and Europe, and witnessed the liberation of Paris.Shaw took up writing realizing that it was his inborn vocation. In 1936 he completed his first work, the play Bury the Dead and enjoyed country-wide popularity at once. It was a rapid-fire grotesque, an antiwar drama: killed soldiers revolted against being buried, they came up outside their burial places giving no peace to the alive with a call to join them in their march against human annihilation. Then appeared his other works: a collection of short stories Sailor Off the Bremen (1939), the novels Five Decades (1940), Young Lions (1948). After a short break there appeared The Troubled Air (1951), Rich Man, Poor Man (1970).Man, Poor Man. It is a story about the fate of the Jordache family, the parents Axel and Mary Jordache and their three children - Tommy, Rudolf and Gretchen. Natured on traditional views of American success, each pursues the illusion of happiness in his own way, determined to achieve his brightright. Starting with their teen-age years in a Hudson River town, Irwin Shaw follows the Jordaches from Greenwich Village to Hollywood, from a small town in Ohio to a luxury resort in the Mediterranean. Robert Cromie wrote in Saturday Review, that Irwin Shaw has the gift of all great storytellers: he creates characters as genuine as that odd couple across the street, the curious patrons of the corner bar, the tragic figures from the headlines. They are individuals who walk into the living room of your mind, ensconce themselves, and refuse to be dislodged.Jordache fled from Germany where he had killed a man, robbed him and came to America. God bless America. He had killed to get there, Axel thinks to himself. Here he marries a young girl Mary Pease. But there was never love between them. It was only a year after the wedding, but he already hated her... She knew that she had entered upon her sentence of life imprisonment.rolled over very fast. Gretchen, a neat, proper, beautiful girl (as Rudolph thought about her) after an unsuccessful try to sell her body to two black soldiers whom she attended at the hospital where she worked after her job at the Boylan Brick and Tile Works for the offer of eight hundred dollars, became the mistress of Teddy Boylan, a man without enthusiasm, self-indulgent and cynical. Later she got married to Willie, but the marriage was not happy either. She succeeded later in theatrical and cinema business somehow. Thomas (who smelled like a wild animal, as Rudolph said about him) had soon to leave school and leave his family and the town. He was sent to live at his uncles place. But there too he got into trouble and was accused of statutory rape. His father had to go there to settle the matter. He paid five thousand dollars to the man to free Thomas from prison. But he did that not for Thomas. He did it for Rudolph. He didnt want his beloved son to start life with a brother in a jail which could ruin him as a promising successful politician and businessman. Thomas was like a rolling stone, getting all the time from one trouble into another, and finally was killed, leaving his son Wesley to move on his own in the cruel world.Axel spent all the money he had saved during his life keeping a bakery in a rented house, he and his wife quarreled. It sent Axel into grief and depression. He even thought that maybe he would meet an Englishman here in America, would kill him as he had killed a man in Germany, and get back from where he came. He got too tired to live. For the last time he made the portion of rolls. Before putting them in the oven, he kneaded the poison into the roll thoroughly, then reshaped the roll and put it back into the pan. My message to the world, he thought. He left the bakery, went to the river, got in the boat and let it be carried in the middle of the stream, and drowned himself. His body had never been found.had a talent for music and played the trumpet in the school band. He was handsome, well-mannered, well-spoken, admired by his teachers, affectionate. He was the only child in the family who kissed his mother when he left for school and when he came back. He was the hope of the family, unlike the younger son, Thomas, and their daughter - they were, as mother says inhabitants of her house. Rudolph is her blood. He really succeeded in life and became the Mayor of Whitby. He cared about his parents, and he tried to help Gretchen and Thomas in their life. When Thomas intended to return five thousand dollars, he owed to the family, the money collected for the education of Rudolph, he didnt take it. He put the money in the bank in Thomass name. It made the capital of sixty thousand dollars soon for Thomas. But it didnt bring him happiness, it didnt save him from death he was coming to all his life.deep changes in the life of the American society in the late 70s inspired Shaw to create Evening in Byzantium and Bread Upon the Water.Shaw is also known as a playwright. He is the author of such works as Plain People, The Brooklyn Idyll, Sons and Soldiers, The Assasin.Shaw spent the last years of his life in France and Switzerland where he mostly wrote memoirs and critical essays. In 1979 he visited the USA and it proved the creation of the novel The Top of the Hill. Some other works of Irwin Shaw are novels Voices of a Summer Day, Lucy Crown, Two Weeks in Another Town and short story collections Welcome to the City, Act of Faith, Mixed Company, Love on a Dark Street.Shaw died on 16 May 1984 in Switzerland.

James Jones

1921-1977Jones, one of the major novelists of his generation, is known primarily as the author of fiction that probes the effects of World War II on the individual soldier.Jones was born in Robinson, in the state of Illinois. For several years James Jones lived in the Hawaii where he studied at the University of Honolulu. Later on he went to the New York University from which he graduated in 1945. During the years of 1939-1944 Jones served in the Pacific with the USA Army. He took part in World War II, got wounded at Guadalcanal, and was awarded the order of The Purple Heart and the Silver Star. He returned to Robinson, where he started to write about his experiences. After shelving his unpublished first novel, They Shall Inherit the Laughter, Jones completed the critically acclaimed international bestseller From Here to Eternity (1951).had never written seriously until after he joined the regular Army. In his works he described the routines of American Army life, the treatment of the men aimed at making them obedient mechanical cogs of the dehumanizing war machine. His military experience furnished the background and provided the material and facts for his works. James Jones novel From Here to Eternity is among the best books of the post-war period. It is a naturalistic undisguised presentation of peacetime Army life in Hawaii on the eve of the Pearl Harbour attack. The novel aroused stormy criticism. Some readers admired the book; others were shocked by its lurid language and the deplorable, scandalous events.Here to Eternity. The events described in the novel take place in the Hawaii and refer to the period immediately preceding the Pearl Harbour attack. The book gives a brutal and almost ugly picture of Army life there. It is socially and politically significant as the servicemen are endowed with traits and features characteristic of their civilian compatriots.central figure of the novel is private Robert Lee Prewitt. The ways of Army life prove to be especially painful and unbearable to him as he is a sensitive man with a strongly developed sense of proper pride, a romantic sense of personal honor and an overdeveloped sense of justice. His philosophy is to fight for the rights of the underdog., or Prew, as they call him in the company, was born in the Kentucky Mountains, the son of a miner. When his mother was dying she made her son promise that he would never hurt anyone unless its absolute a must, unless you just have to do it. He never broke the death-bed promise to his mother and kept his integrity intact to his last breath.was a gifted person, but he had no call for anything until the first time he handled a bugle. After his enlistment Prew had much success with the bugle, he was a member of the Bugle Corps, soon became the best bugler in the Regiment. His art was excellent, and he was selected to play Taps in Arlington, on the Memorial Day (May 30). He also became famous as a boxer and the commandment were proud to have such a soldier in the outfit. His rating was Private First Class and Fourth Class Specialist. After the end of the 1st hitch he re-enlisted for 3 years more. Robert E.Lee Prewitt loves not so much the army but the masculinity of barracks life. He wants to be a thirty-year-man because the raw violence, the drunken sprees, the sex without responsibility, the demands on physical endurance and technical skill express and challenge his maleness. Prewitts war with the army is touched off by a breach of the freedom he expects in return for his loyalty-and service as a soldier.had the bad luck to fall ill and was sent to the hospital for the treatment. When he returned to the outfit after two month absence he had lost his position. His pride was hurt when an inferior Bugler was promoted above him. Prewitt asked to be transferred to another outfit. After he refused pointblank to ever take part in a fight, he was sent to the kitchen, where his work was hard and humiliating, though he never complained. In a skirmish with a drunken sergeant, his senior, who wanted to stab Prewitt with a knife, he took him on, and the Tribunal sent him to the Stockade. In keeping with his life philosophy Prewitt did not mention the knife at the trial, which would have saved him from imprisonment. After three months in the Stockade Prew came out but didn't return to the barracks; he became a deserter. He missed his comrades, he felt homesick for his outfit. After the Pearl Harbour air raid of the Japanese planes his decision to return to the regiment was made. He wanted to steal to the barracks under cover of night. A patrol car traced his movements and taking him for a spy shot him at a short distance from his regiment. Prewitts history is an eloquent paean to a concept of individualism rapidly becoming anachronistic in an increasingly bureaucratic society. Milt Warden, the co-protagonist of the novel, embodies in his personality the masculine world of the enlisted man. He equates his integrity with the existence of the enlisted man, and when he falls in love with the company commanders wife, Karen, and finally refuses the commission which would make her permanently available to him, he preserves his integrity and his individualism. He does not sell out to the bureaucracy or to women. At the end of the novel, Prew is dead, but Warden drinks and brawls on the way to Mrs.Kipfers brothel as the Lurline sails from Hawaii with Karen aboard.other work, Some Came Running (1957), a long panoramic novel about a soldier, who came home from the war, is set in a Midwestern town at the time between World War II and the Korean War. Its also the story of love, the theme which Jones was unable to handle. The love affair in Some Came Running between the writer Dave and the teacher Gwen borders on the ludicrous. A college professor of English, Gwen has developed a naive thesis about the relation of frustration in love and artistic creativity. When Dave, one of the writers about whom she has been theorizing, returns to his small midwestern hometown, Gwen immediately falls in love with him. Dave, who hates the town, has returned for a visit only to embarrass his brother. But after one meeting with Gwen, who has an undeserved reputation as a woman of the world, Dave decides to settle in the town until he succeeds in seducing her. After a visitor two, he is passionately in love with Gwen. The couple never do get together because the thirty-eight-year-old Ph.D. in literature would prefer to lose the man she loves rather than admit to him that she is still a virgin! The forty-year-old Dave, who has had plenty of experience with women, decides that Gwen will not sleep with him because she is a nymphomaniac! The interminable philosophical digressions on life and love that inflate the novel are equally sophomoric. James Jones fictional terrain is limited to that peculiar all-male world governed by strictly masculine interests, attitudes, and values. Into this world, no female can step without immediately altering its character. The female must remain on the periphery of male life - a powerful force in male consciousness, but solely as a provocative target for that intense sexual need that has nothing to do with procreation or marriage.Pistol (1959) is the story of an Army private who accidentally gets a pistol that comes to be his symbol of safety in war. The Thin Red Line (1962) is another war novel dealing with the life of a U. S. infantry company on Guadalcanal in 1942-1943 but its attitudes and theme belong to the 1960s. The title itself is a reflection of the main theme; it symbolizes the uncertainty of the borderline between sanity and insanity, between man and beast, life and death.battle, the company, made up of platoons which are made up of squads, is deployed by the battalion commander according to a pre-established plan of attack. The battalions in the regiment are deployed by the regimental commander. The regiments are deployed by the division commander; the divisions deployed by the army commander, and the armies deployed all over the globe by a staff in Washington, D.C. Within this hierarchy, which gets larger and larger as it moves up the chain and farther and farther from the battle lines, the fighting soldier is a grain of sand on a beach encircling the globe. When the men see wounded and dead for the first time they are shocked and horrified. During their first battle, they react intensely to the suffering and death of their comrades. But as the fighting continues, the dead bodies of their fellow-soldiers no longer really bother them, and they lose all compunction about killing enemy soldiers. The starving Japanese prisoners are treated inhumanly, but only because the combat situation has revealed to their captors the insignificance of the individual human life except to the being who possesses it. Jones vision of human existence is brutal and unsentimental, and he conveys it with superb artistry. His story of battle is fast-paced, tightly structured, painfully realistic. James Joness fictional terrain is limited, but within that limited area he has presented a frightening twentieth-century view of individual mans insignificance in society and in the universe. Just Call. His novel Just Call is the reflection of life of the lost generation. The four central characters Strange, Landers, Winch and Prell are recovering in the hospital from physical and psychological damage the war inflicted on them. The burden of their hard experience tells upon their fate. Prell dies in the quarrel, Winch finishes his life by suicide in the psychiatric department of the hospital, Landers leaves the hospital and is run over by the car ten steps away from the hospital. Strange, after recovering, goes back to war in Europe. But the prospect of future life horrifies him. He comes to the railings on the deck of the ship, intentionally leans over, and falls into the cold pit of ocean blackness. His other novels are Go to the Widow-Maker (1967), The Marry Month of May (1971), A Touch of Danger (1973), and Whistle (1978). Jones published an acclaimed short-story collection, The Ice-Cream Headache and Other Stories (1968), a nonfictional history of World War II from the viewpoint of the soldier, World War II (1975), and a book of essays, Viet Journal (1975). Jones also published short fiction and articles throughout his adult life.

Flannery OConnor

1925-1964OConnor was born in Savannah, Georgia, in 1925 and was raised and spent her short life almost entirely in nearby Milledgeville, where her family had lived since before the Civil War. Although she limited herself to a rural, southern literary terrain and the body of her work was small, her place in twentieth-century American literature is secure.wrote steadily from 1948 until her death in 1964. For fourteen of those sixteen years she was plagued by lupus, a painful, wasting disease that she had inherited from her father and that kept her ever more confined and immobile. I have never been anywhere but sick, she wrote. In a sense sickness is a place, more instructive than a long trip to Europe, and its always a place where theres no company, where nobody can follow. Sickness before death is a very appropriate thing and I think those who don't have it miss one of God's great mercies.was educated at the Georgia State College for Women from which she graduated in 1945. She then went off to the Writers Workshop at the University of Iowa. After receiving her M.F.A. there in 1947, OConnor returned to Milledgeville to live with her widowed mother. Her first novel, Wise Blood, published in 1952 when she was 27, centers on a fanatical preacher of the Church of God without Christ, who insists that the blind dont see, the lame dont walk, and whats dead stays that way, but who nevertheless is consumed by a passion to imitate His sufferings. She followed that novel with a short story collection, A Good Man Is Hard to Find (1955), a second novel, The Violent Bear It Away (1960), which concerns a backwoods prophet and his atheist nephew locked in struggle for the prophets grandson. Another collection of stories, Everything That Rises Must Converge, was published posthumously in 1965. The Complete Stories (1971) won her a posthumous National Book Award.disciplined as a writer, OConnor forced herself to sit at her desk without conscious distraction of any sort at the same time every day for two hours, even if no inspiration came. Sometimes I work for months and have to throw everything away, she commented, but I dont think any of that time was wasted. Something goes on that makes it easier when it does come well. While her central concern in her fiction was the abstract idea of good and evil, she felt compelled to confine herself to the concrete. The peculiar problem of the short-story writer, she noted, is how to make the action he describes reveal as much of the mystery of existence as possible. He has only a short space to do it in and he cant do it by statement. He has to do it by showing, not by saying, and by showing the concrete - so that his problem is how to make the concrete work double time for him.the first, she was recognized as a satirist of astonishing originality and vigor, whose targets were smugness, optimism, and self-righteousness. However, the essential element of Flannery OConnors life and work was that she was born a Roman Catholic and that she remained one without the slightest wavering of faith throughout her thirty-nine years. A thunder-and-lightning Christian belief pervades every story and novel she ever wrote. Her attraction to the grotesque and the violent puts off many critics and readers. They fail to appreciate that the violent motifs in her fiction grow from her passionate, Christian vision of our secular times. What she wanted to tell us, in a voice that could not be ignored, was that in our rationality we had lost the one essential - a spiritual center for our lives.title story of A Good Man Is Hard to Find, for example, concerns a family of six, all of whom are killed by an escaped convict, the Misfit. When the grandmother pleads with the Misfit to pray to Jesus for help, he replies: I dont need any help. Im doing all right by myself. OConnor seems to be saying that we have become so accustomed to the lack of God in our life., throughout most of her adult life, OConnor suffered from lupus, a rare crippling auto-immune disease that had killed her father and eventually took her life. Because of her disease she set her apart from other people. OConnor developed a deep sensitivity to misfits and outsiders. Not surprisingly, many of her most memorable characters are social outcasts or people who are in some way mentally or physically disabled. There is an underlying sense of sympathy concerning their pain and suffering.OConnors work reflects her intense commitment to her personal beliefs. In her exaggerated tragic and at times shockingly violent tales, she forces us to confront such human faults as hypocrisy, insensitivity, self-centeredness, and prejudice.her short life and modest output, OConnor is probably the most admired American woman writer of the postwar years. A collection of essays and miscellaneous prose Mastery and Manners (1961), and her selected letters, The Habit of Being (1979), reveal an engaging social side of her personality that is not always apparent in her fiction.

John Updike

1932-2009with what seems a total recall of what it is like to grow up in the American middle class, Updike also displays a skill with language that can evoke our responses to even the most ordinary and familiar events. In short, his talent is for taking our common daily experience and endowing it with both substance and importance. He is acknowledged as a distinguished stylist.Updike was born on March 18, 1932 and grew up in the small town of Shillington in rural Pennsylvania. In his boyhood memoir, The Dogwood Tree, Updike portrays his youthful ambition as artistic: ... riding a thin pencil line out of Shillington, out of time altogether, into an infinity of unseen and even unborn hearts. He describes returning to Shillington as a mature, successful writer and confronting a picture of himself as this ambitious boy. He senses disappointment: Like some phantom conjured by this child from a glue bottle, I have executed his commands; acquired pencils, paper, and an office. Now I wait apprehensively for his next command, or at least a nod of appreciation, and he smiles through me as if I am already transparent with failure.graduating from Harvard in 1954 with a BA degree, Updike studied drawing in England for a year at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art, and on his return to the United States went to work for The New Yorker, a weekly magazine which has published many of his short stories. After two years there, he made the courageous decision to support his young family entirely by writing. He left New York for Massachusetts, and he had since produced impressive novels, stories, poems, and critical essays. the publication of his first collection of poetry, The Carpentered Hen and Other Tamed Animals (1958), John Updike published several other collections of poetry, many novels and short stories, numerous essays and book reviews.the first, Updikes stories had a freshness and honesty that brought them regularly into The New Yorkers pages. They have since been collected under such titles as The Same Door (1959), Pigeon Feathers (1962), The Music School (1966) and Museums and Women (1972).novels have brought Updike further acclaim. The first novel Poorhouse Fair was published in 1959. Updikes The Poorhouse Fair is a narrow-gauged story, quietly yet effectively done. The story concerns a county poorhouse, its inmates, its prefect, and visitors to the annual Fair. The building housing is a decayed Victorian mansion. In the cupola, three or four stories high, Conner, the rationalistic, ambitious, idealistic homosexual prefect has his office. He sees himself as a scientifically minded director of his elderly, sickly, and indigent charges. Because he envisions future and better positions with the federal government, he wants to be successful as prefect. Therefore he attempts to institutionalize the lives of the inmates. For example, he puts name tags on chairs, claiming this gives each individual his or her chair. The inmates know better - it gives each of them a tag or number; they resent his busy work.entire action takes place on the day of the Fair. During the afternoon there is rain. Conner joins the inmates, wanting to show them his charity and chumminess. They resist him, and as the rain continues their resentment, like the humidity, increases. Finally the rain stops. Outside, as Conner is bent over, one of the inmates, Gregg, slightly intoxicated, throws a stone at him. The others also pelt him. Trying not to display wrath or lose his dignity, Conner walks off.s elderly indigents have few comforts, and mostly don't even want those. They want to be themselves, unorganized, experiencing the days or years left to them. Being poor, they have few illusions about their eminence or significance in the social order. The visitors to the Fair seek power, sexual encounters, and money. These three - power, sex, money - compose their dream of the world and their roles in it.the most successful have been the three tales in the Rabbit series: Rabbit, Run (1960), Rabbit Redux (1971), and Rabbit Is Rich (1981), for which Updike was awarded a second National Book Award and a Pulitzer Prize. The sexual frankness of Updikes second novel brought the author to public attention. The author exposes his old anti-hero to the radicalism and sexual freedom of the youth movement of the 1960s. He takes his inspiration from the American Protestant small-town eastern middle class, treating themes on what he calls the despair of the daily. These novels chronicle the life of Harry Rabbit Angstrom, who lives, as his creator might have, an outwardly conventional life in a small Pennsylvania town. In revealing Rabbits yearnings and disappointments, the uncertain course of his heart, and the dismaying fluctuations of his relationships with family and friends, Updike gives us a remarkably accurate portrait of the 1960s and I970s in the United States, the Americans, reacting to changing attitudes about national, social, and moral behavior. As always with an Updike novel, readers enjoy the feel of life - the sights, smells, and sounds that bring life into all the Rabbit series John Updikes characters in Rabbit, Run can hardly be said to be participants in a dialectic. Mostly they feel. Structurally, and stylistically, Rabbit, Run is skillfully handled. The action is in the present tense - Rabbit feels, Rabbit sees, Rabbit touches...the protagonist in Salingers Catcher in the Rye, whom he resembles, Rabbit runs. Coming home from work he stops to play basketball in an alley. Characteristically, he is not concerned with the reactions of the kids to his intruding himself. He likes to show off his skills. He finds his wife Janice, swollen in pregnancy, sitting behind a locked door, watching the Mousketeers on T.V. and drinking an Old Fashioned. She has many anxieties, and he no longer finds her pretty. She asks for a cigarette. He says he has given them up. She asks whether he thinks hes a saint. A quarrel develops. He goes out, to pick up their son who is at his grandparents, Rabbit's own parents. Disgust and frustration have been building in him. From outside his parents house he sees the boy, his parents, and his sister. Not seeming to have come to a decision, Rabbit takes off down the street. He finds his car, bought from his father-in-law, for $1000, a real bargain, because old man Springer didnt want the embarrassment of a son-in-law driving around in a 36 Buick. Rabbit drives off, out of town, from highway to highway, experiencing the twilight, mountains, fear over being pursued, exhilaration, eating a juicy hamburger, then hours later he parks in front of the apartment of Mr.Tothers, who had been his basketball coach. In the morning he catches Tothers coming out. Tothers, half-homosexual, defeated, and full of sententiousness, lets him sleep in his warm, unmade bed. That evening they go out with two tarts, and Rabbit goes home with one, Ruth, who needs $15 to pay the rent. On it goes, with Rabbit running. At the end, after he has unintentionally contributed to his sons death - Janice, in an alcoholic stupor, has allowed the child to drown - Rabbit is still experiencing, still feeling. His hands lift of their own and he feels the wind on his ears even before his heels, hitting heavily on the pavement at first but with an effortless gathering out of a kind of sweet panic growing higher and quicker and quieter, he runs. Ah: runs. Runs. The novel catches many little ironies - Rabbits notion that he is praising his coach when he is praising himself, or the Ministers wanting a glass of water while consoling Mrs.Springer, and many others. Human motives and actions show a welter of inconsistencies. For example, Ruth, the prostitute, is quite capable of loyalty and devotion, and in her own way, maintains her self-respect.widely read Updikes novels are The Centaur (1963), partly an evocation of the authors father, a high school teacher, and partly a retelling in modern terms of the myth of Chiron, the tutor of Achilles, for which he earned the National Book Award; Of the Farm (1965), Couples (1968), a novel about wife swapping in a suburb of Boston; A Month of Sundays (1975), The Coup (1978), Rogers Version (1987). The Witches of Eastwick (1984) was made into a motion picture.1990 John Updike published another bestselling novel about the life of a contemporary American everyman, Harry Rabbit Angstrom - Rabbit at Rest, for which he received his second Pulitzer Prize. It solidified his reputation as one of the most astute observers of the American middle class.his prose and poetry, Updikes essays rank with some of the most perceptive criticism of our day. Several of his critical essays have been collected in a volume entitled Hugging the Shore (1983) which won the 1983 National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism.accepting the American Book Award in 1982, Updike said to young writers: Have faith. May you surround yourselves with parents, editors, mates, and children as supportive as mine have been. But the essential support and encouragement of course come from within, arising out of the mad notion that your society needs to know what only you can tell it.his short stories and novels John Updike vividly captures the essence of life in contemporary America. Through his depiction of ordinary situations and events, he explores many important issues of our time and offers insight into the underlying significance of everyday life. John Updike had a great influence on the generation of writers who were born after him. He was one of the finest short-story writers at work in the twentieth century, with a tender, delicately descriptive style and sharp eye for the seemingly insignificant moments in which character is revealed and fate determined.

Anne Tyler

b. 1941Tyler was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota and spent her childhood and grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. Then she moved with her family to Baltimore, Maryland. She graduated at nineteen from Duke University and went on to do graduate work in Russian studies at Columbia University. Inspired by the work of Eudora Welty, Anne Tyler devotes much of her fiction to exposing the latent, unusual characteristics of outwardly ordinary people. Her novels reveal sensitive truths about the contemporary family. Many of Tylers novels center on a woman character, but that woman is of most interest because of her role within a family unit. Few of Tylers women determine their own destiny, free from the responsibilities of child rearing or family participation. She published her first novel, If Morning Ever Comes in 1962. Since then she has published several more novels. Her next novels grew in dimension and impact. They were A Slipping-Down Life (1970), The Clock Winder (1972), Celestial Navigation (1974), Searching for Caleb (1976), and Earthly Possessions (1977). Tyler gained widespread critical praise with her novels Morgans Passing (1980), Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant (1982), The Accidental Tourist (1985), Saint Maybe (1991), Ladder of Years (1995), A Patchwork Planet (1998), and Back When We Were Grownups (2001). Her eleventh novel, Breathing Lessons (1988) was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1989 for fiction. She is a member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. She is also the author of a vast number of short stories and book reviews.Tyler displays ability to create well-developed, realistic characters and evoke an emotional response through an unsentimental portrayal of the characters tragic lives.Accidental Tourist. Macon and Sarah got married when they were very young. First it was interesting to learn the art of living together. But the reader discovers that they are different. Sarah is haphazard, mercurial and unconcerned while Macon is steady and methodical. Sarah thinks crowds are exciting while Macon is homesick and house-proud. House comfort is for him a kind of panacea. Macon Leary is a travel writer who hates both travel and strangeness and anything out of the ordinary. He writes series of guidebooks The Accidental Tourist for people forced to travel on business to pretend they never left home. He hated to travel himself but he loved the writing. For some time they learned to ignore the differences, staying two different people, and not always even friends. They had different approaches to the upbringing of their son Ethan. When the boy was murdered at the camp they blame each other because they let him go to the camp. They become even more detached from each other and finally divorce is inevitable. Grounded by loneliness, comfort, and a somewhat odd domestic life, unwillingness of Edward - Ethans dog - to compromise makes him turn for help to Muriel - a surprising new adventure, arriving in the form of a fuzzy-haired dog obedience trainer who promises to turn his life around and thrusts him headlong into a remarkable engagement with life. She is a persistent and strong person whom fate has slept pretty hard but who didnt give up. Muriel does everything to pull Macon out of his capsule. He again learned to believe people, to love children and enjoy life. But he is afraid of his feelings and attachment to Muriel and her son Alexander. He is older, and they also are different: Muriel is fond of traveling, Macon hates it; she is energetic, vivacious, and unpredictable while Macon remains a beautiful love story about how one brave woman brings joy and purpose to the life of a man who has stumbled through life and finds himself sinking. Muriel is the character of a generation. She loves Macon with all her heart and she turns the accidental tourist into a happy traveler.

Michael Crichton

1942-2008Crichton is the father of techno-thriller, the author of such novels as The Andromeda Strain (1969), The Great Train Robbery (1975), Jurassic Park (1990), Rising Sun (1992), Disclosure (1993), The Lost World (1995), Airframe (1996), Timeline (1999).of these novels display an intimate knowledge of the science involved as a tool to building intrigue and suspense. Primatology, international economics, Nordic history, neurobiology, biophysics and genetics are artfully explained through Crichtons knowledge and research of each subject. These bestselling novels have been translated into over 20 languages, worldwide.Crichton was born on October 23, 1942 in Chicago. His father, a journalist, moved the family to Roslyn, New York, a suburb of New York City, when Michael was 6. The oldest of four children, he was also the first to be published. The New York Times published a travel article from him when he was 14. Since Crichtons first taste of public writing was so rewarding, it helped him decide that writing was what he wanted to do with the rest of his life.was a star basketball player in Roslyn High School from which he graduated in 1960. Crichton then decided to go to Harvard University and become a writer. But Harvard proved to be very disheartening for the young writer. His writing style was severely criticized and his grades hovered around a C.the age of eighteen he decided that it was Harvard, and not he, that was in error. Convinced of this he hesitatingly retyped an essay of George Orwell (1903-1950) and submitted it as his own. The professor did not catch his plagiarism, and gave Orwell a B. Crichton was convinced that the Harvard English Department was too hard for him. George Orwell, his real name was Eric Arthur Blair was educated in England and won a scholarship to Eton, where Aldous Huxley was won of his teachers. Orwell was a brilliant scholar and after quitting his service with the Indian Imperial Police in 1928, which he joined in Burma, he decided to make his living as a writer. For the next few years he lived in Paris and London, publishing articles and working as a tutor, teacher, dishwasher, and clerk in a bookstore. Out of his varied experiences came Down and Out in Paris and London (1933), for which he first used his pen name George Orwell, and his early novels, A Clergymans Daughier (1935) and Keep the Aspidistra Flying (1936). During the war years Orwell wrote many articles for newspapers as well as critical essays and books about England, among them The Lion and the Unicorn (1941).his experiment with Orwell, Michael Crichton decided to study anthropology. After graduating from Harvard, Crichton, now twenty-three, was a visiting lecturer in anthropology at Cambridge University, in England. Crichton also won a Henry Russell Shaw Fellowship and got to travel in Europe and North Africa for a year. Upon his return to the States, Crichton began training as a doctor. He eventually graduated with his MD from Harvard Medical School in 1969, but never became a licensed practitioner of medicine.paid his way through medical school by writing thrillers under different names. A book written during his medical days under the name of Jeffery Hudson, A Case of Need, had many lightly disguised references to people at Harvard, and they were not all complimentary. So, Crichton was in trouble when the book won the Edgar Award for the Best Mystery of the Year. He claims that grades at Harvard were given according to peoples informal opinion of the student. Students, who wrote, especially those who wrote about the medical profession, were asking for trouble.Crichtons final year at medical school The Andromeda Strain was published. It was a bestseller and Crichton sold it to Hollywood. Crichton then gained a celebrity status around the hospital that he did not particularly want. Although, it may have helped him get the hospital directors cooperation in researching his first non-fiction publication, Five Patients: The Hospital Explained. For that book Crichton was named the 1970 Medical Writer of the Year by The Association of American Medical Writers.served for one year (1969-70) as a postdoctoral fellow at the Jonas Salk Institute for Biological Science in La Jolla, California, before taking up writing full time. Later, Crichton said of his decision: To quit medicine to become a writer struck most people like quitting the Supreme Court to become a bail also the Creator and Executive Producer of the television series ER, which he actually created right after his medical days. The popular television series ER is almost a direct replay of his days in the emergency room. In 1995, ER won eight Emmys and Crichton himself received an award from the Producers Guild of America in the category of outstanding multi-episodic series. Later that year, he also was honored with the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award for a computer expert who wrote one of the first books about information technology (Electronic Life, 1983) and a collector of modern art and an accomplished traveler.has also had many experiences in the psychic and spiritual realms and has also done such mystic things as seeing auras, spoon bending, and an exorcism. He now lives in New York. He is also on his fourth marriage, this time to Anne-Marie Martin (since 1987), and has a daughter named Taylor.Park. Reports that a lizard-like reptile is attacking infants and infirm people in coastal towns on the island of Costa Rica which are attributed by the natives to the hubia, or raptor, are ignored by the authorities. That is, until an American doctor working in Costa Rica treats two patients who have both been attacked by the hubia. Their test results, which indicate that they have been poisoned by mysterious venom, are passed down to Dr. Alan Grant, a renowned paleontologist who is working on a dinosaur dig in Montana with his associate Ellie Sattler.has just uncovered another fossilized velociraptor skeleton in the Montana Badlands, and is interrupted by a phone call from John Hammond, his wealthy sponsor for the dig. Hammond insists that Grant and his assistant, Dr. Ellie Sattler, fly down to Hammonds private island Isla Nublar near Costa Rica for a consultation.are to be joined by Gennaro, a lawyer for InGen; Ian Malcolm, a mathematician specializing in the field of chaos theory; Tim and Alexis (Lex), Hammonds young grandchildren.Hammond invested a lot of money into the creation of his park. The concept of the most advanced amusement park in the world, combining the latest electronic and biological technologies he said. Im not talking about rides. Everybody has rides. Coney Island has rides. And these days everybody has animatronic environments. The haunted house, the pirate den, the Wild West and the earthquake - everyone has those things. So we set out to make biological attractions. Living attractions. Attractions so astonishing they would capture the imagination of the entire world. And we can never forget the ultimate object of the project in Costa Rica - to make money, Hammond said, staring out the window of the jet. Lots and lots of money.the specialists came to the island they were proposed to make tour about it. A line of Toyota Land Cruisers came out of an underground garage beneath the visitors center. They were electric cars guided by a cable in the roadway. Eventually we hope to drive among the animals - just as they do in African game parks, said Ed Regis, but, for now, sit back and enjoy the self-guided tour. They saw many animals brought to life due to astonishing technique for recovering and cloning dinosaur DNA. Every zoo expert knew that certain animals were especially likely to get free of their cages. These animals were kept in the open as big as enclosures, separated from the roads by moats and electric fence: concrete double-layer chain-link fence twelve feet high, with spirals of wire at the top.tour of Hammonds crowning achievement, the as-yet-unopened theme park, Jurassic Park, proves deadly as the security systems go off-line. It was destroyed by the computer specialist Dennis Nedry who was paid for it. The lights had gone out all over the island. He was to steal embryos from the laboratory. He entered the fertilization room. The lab was deserted; as he had anticipated, all the staff was at dinner.... The embryos were arranged by species: Stegosaurus, Apatosaurus, Hadrosaurus, Tyrannosaurus. Each embryo in a thin glass container, wrapped in silver foil, stoppered with polylene. Nedry quickly took two of each, slipping them into the shaving cream can....Nedry glanced at his watch. From here, into the park, and three minutes straight to the east dock. Three minutes from there back to the control room. Piece of cake. But he loses his way in darkness and is killed by a dinosaur. The untamed dinosaurs overtake the island, killing anyone and anything in their path. The unwelcome human visitors are separated and each group must find a way back to safety - and stop the rampaging dinosaurs. John Hammond and all others who invented the park are killed by dinosaurs. When the situation comes out of control completely and there is a danger that the animals will reach the continent and threaten the whole planet, the government of Costa Rica gives an order to level the island and kill the animals. The plain fact was that an ecological disaster had been narrowly averted. The government of Costa Rica felt it had been misled and deceived by John Hammond and his plans for the island.Lost World. Six years after the death of John Hammond and the mysterious destruction of his Jurassic Park island of Isla Nubia, mathematician Ian Malcolm discovers a second island off Costa Rica, where Hammond created his genetically bred dinosaurs. He travels there with a scientific research team including paleobiologist Richard Levine, Sarah Harding, and two kids, Kelly and Arby, both eleven years old.on the island, they find themselves on the run for their lives from some of the killer dinosaurs with whom Ian has already crossed paths, along with some new killers. The group not only has to contend with the dinosaurs, but with murderous rival scientist Lewis Dodgson and his cronies, who are out to steal the dinosaur eggs and bring them back to the mainland, as well.

At the end of my research for Lost World, I was persuaded that a cometary impact alone, no matter how massive, was insufficient to cause dinosaur extinction. Nor would it explain the time course of that extinction, which took place over many thousands of years. However, a comet impact might well have disturbed the entire biosphere for a period of years, perhaps interfering with food supply and thus producing weakened animals susceptible to any epidemic disease that came along. Many extinctions are thought to be the result of a combination of stresses of this sort, said Michael Crichton.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Say a few words about John Steinbecks life. Comment on the main theme of most of his novels. Where did John Steinbecks themes come from? Give an understanding of his literary goals and prove her realistic method of description.

. Name the literary works written by James Albert Michener. Comment on the subject of Recessional. How does Michener reveal the features of his characters in the novel?

. What facts from Irwin Shaws biography do you know? Why did he take up writing realizing that it was his inborn vocation? What genres does the author use in his works? Describe the central figures of the novel Rich Man, Poor Man.

. Tell the story of James Joness life. What themes of life does Jones touch upon in his novels? Comment on the peculiarities of the authors style in From here to Eternity. How does Jones combine serious and ridiculous material in his works?

. Give a brief account of Flannery OConnors life. Name the main themes the writer concerns in her works. What general features do the main characters of her novels have? Did Flannery OConnors disease influence her writings?

. Say a few words about John Updikes life and work. Name the novels written by John Updike. In what way does the author characterize the heroes of his novels? Comment on John Updikes style.

. Tell the story of Anne Tylers life. What are the main types of people exist for the author? How does she reveal the features of her characters? Name the main themes the writer concerns in her works.

. Why is Michal Crichton called the father of techno-thriller? Name the novels written by Michal Crichton. What problems does he deal with in the writings? What are the most attractive characters in Jurrasic Park? Enlarge upon the subject. Comment on the plot of The Lost World.


By the end of the 19th century Henry James, Howells, and even Mark Twain had all tried their hand at playwriting. Behind them was a long struggle of American dramatists. In the 18th century there had been principally Thomas Godfrey (1736-1763), a Philadelphia poet who in 1759 had written the blank verse tragedy The Prince of Parthia, and Royall Tyler (1757-1826), a Boston lawyer, remembered for The Contrast, the first comedy by a native American, produced professionally in New York in 1787.Dunlap (1766-1839) helped to turn the century on a native note with his historical melodrama Andre (1798). Robert Montgomery Bird (1806-1854) tailored his historical tragedy The Gladiator (1831) and his domestic tragedy The Broker of Bogota (1834). But the receipts went to the actors, not to the playwrights. Bird, discouraged, turned to writing novels like Nick of the Woods (1837).was great theatrical activity in nineteenth-century America, a time when there were no movies, radio, or television. Every town of any size had its theater or opera house in which touring companies performed. Given the hunger for entertainment, one may wonder why no significant American drama was written in the century that produced, among others, Melville, Emerson, Whitman, Dickinson, and Twain.World War I, expressionism made itself felt, to be followed after World War II by the influence of Sartre, Brecht, and Samuel Beckett.the development of a native drama, the important impacts on modern American drama came from abroad. European drama, which was to influence modern American drama profoundly, matured in the last third of the nineteenth century with the achievements of three playwrights: the Norwegian Henrik Ibsen (1828-1906), the Swede August Strindberg (1849-1912), and the Russian Anton Chekhov (1860-1904). Ibsen deliberately tackled subjects such as guilt, sexuality, and mental illness - subjects which had never before been so realistically and disturbingly portrayed on stage. Strindberg brought to his characterizations an unprecedented level of psychological complexity. And Chekhov, along with Ibsen and Strindberg, shifted the subject matter of drama from wildly theatrical displays of external action to inner action and emotions and the concerns of everyday life. Chekhov once remarked, People dont go to the North Pole and fall off icebergs. They go to the office and quarrel with their wives and eat cabbage soup.three great playwrights bequeathed to their American heirs plays about life as it is actually lived. They presented characters and situations more or less realistically, in what has been called the slice of life dramatic technique.drama is based on the illusion that when we watch a play, we are looking at life through a fourth wall that has been removed so that we can see the action. Soon after the beginning of the twentieth century, realism became the dominant mode of American drama. As with all theatrical revolutions, the movement toward realism began apart from the commercial theatre. But soon the commercial theatre adopted realism too.vitalization of both the American theater and American drama came not from the Broadway stage but from the little theaters later spreading to smaller cities and college campuses. Croups like the Washington Square Players in New York City and the Provincetown Players on Cape Cod (later in New York) were celebrated trailblazers.Eugene ONeill (1888-1953), American literature had its first great dramatist. ONeills beginnings were off-Broadway efforts, but they came as a consequence of his familiarity with the working theater (his father had been a famous actor) and his study in the 47 Workshop at Harvard under George Pierce Baker.period between the two world wars saw an activity in American drama that made ONeill part of a movement. The Adding Machine (1923) by Elmer Rice did much to bring the expressionist movement to the American stage. His Street Scene (1929) and Judgment Day (1934) were more topical but not less socially conscious. What Price Glory? (1924) by Maxwell Anderson (1888-1959) was a successful war play whose lusty language startled audiences. Sidney Howard (1891-1939), who like ONeill, was a student at Harvards 47 Workshop, began a series of popular plays with They Knew What They Wanted (1924), which broadened the limits of dramatic subject matter by the realism of its story of unorthodox love. Philip Barry (1896-1949), still another 47 Workshop student, began as a writer of urbane comedies (Paris Bound, 1927) but gained greater dramatic strength through more serious plays - Hotel Universe (1930), The Animal Kingdom (1932), and Here Comes the Clowns (1938). The finest proletarian plays of the socially conscious 1930s were by Clifford Odets (1906-1963), whose Waiting for Lefty (1935) had a vigor that his later plays could not recapture. The former shows the awakening of class consciousness of workers and intellectuals under the pressure of want and exploitation, the growth of the militant spirit of the people rising to fight their oppressors. The play opens with a prologue showing a trade union meeting discussing the question of whether to declare a strike or not. His Awake and Sing! (1935), a nostalgic family drama, became another popular success, followed by Golden Boy, the story of an Italian immigrant youth who ruins his musical talent when he is seduced by the lure of money to become a boxer and injures his hands.ONeill is generally considered the first important figure in American drama. It is significant that several decades after the 1920 production of his first full-length play, Beyond the Horizon, he is still regarded as the most important playwright America has produced.drama before ONeill consisted mostly of shows and entertainments. These wildly theatrical spectacles often featured such delights as chariot races and burning cities, staged by means of special effects that dazzled audiences. Melodramas and farces were also written for famous actors, much as television shows today are created to display the personalities and talents of popular performers. In fact, ONeills own father, James, spent the better part of his life touring in a spectacular melodrama based on Alexander Dumass The Count of Monte Cristo.Neills early one-act plays of the sea, such as Bound Fast for Cardiff (1916), In the Zone (1917), The Long Voyage Home (1917), and The Moon of the Caribbees (1919) described hard life of the sailors whose life he knew well being a sailor himself. He became widely known in the twenties when these were followed by full-length psychological plays like Gold (1921), The Emperor Jones (1921) and Anna Christie (1922), which established his American preeminence. Most of his characters are dissatisfied with life and express their protest against the injustice of the society. In his play The Hairy Ape (1922) he creates the image of a stoker on a liner who is scorned by the rich passengers. Strange Interlude (1928) is a nine-act Freudian tragedy of frustrated desire; Mourning Becomes Electra (1931), a trilogy, is an American version of a Greek tragedy of fate. ONeill masterly used the techniques of the antique theatre. In The Great God Brown (1926), for example, he uses masks, in other plays he restores the chorus of the Greek drama. ONeill adopted the language of poetic symbolism. He received the Pulitzer Prize for his tragedy Beyond the Horizon.Neill was always an experimenter. In The Iceman Cometh (1946) he abandons physical action on the stage for a life in words; in Long Days Journey into Night (produced posthumously in 1956), one of his finest as well as most personal plays, his characters simply talk in a family living room. Its a powerful, extended autobiography in dramatic form focusing on his own family and their physical and psychological deterioration, as witnessed in the course of one night.aware of Sigmund Freud and his new theories about complex self, ONeill tried especially hard to reveal more than realism could normally reveal. In The Great God Brown, ONeill experimented with using masks to differentiate between two sides of a personality. In Days Without End (1934), he had two actors play one character to achieve the same end. And in Strange Interlude characters spoke in aside to the audience, revealing thoughts and feelings that could not be expressed in dialogue. ONeill dominated American drama in his generation; he can be said to have put it on the map. His plays were widely produced abroad, and he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in ONeills, the most distinguished American plays of the 1930s and 1940s were by Thornton Wilder, also a novelist of excellence. His Our Town (1938), which has become a classic, is an idyll of the meaning of existence. The Skin of Our Teeth (1942) is an optimistic version of the theory of cyclical history.the post-World War II period, four dramatists in particular left their mark: William Inge (1913-1973), Tennessee Williams (1911-1983), Arthur Miller (1915-2005), and Edward Albee (b.1928).s Picnic (1953), Bus Stop (1955), and The Dark at the Top of the Stairs (1957) show greater technical strength than originality of theme. At his best Inge is a master of dialogue, as he presents modern mans fear and trembling and self-deceits. So too is Edward Albee, whose savage dialogues of academic intellectuals in Whos Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1962) frighteningly balance the serenity of Wilders Our Town as a rendering of life in America, Albees The Zoo Story (1959) and The American Dream (1961) were earlier studies of mankind frustrated by the imposition of an ideal. The ambitious Tiny Alice (1964) was a frustration for both characters and audience.the four mentioned above, Williams and Miller stand out. The post -World War II years brought Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams to prominence in American drama: Although other playwrights, such as William Inge, have contributed striking and effective plays, Miller and Williams remain the dominant figures of the second half of the century. They represent the two principal movements in modern American drama: realism and realism combined with an attempt at something more imaginative. From the beginning, American playwrights have tried to break away from realism or to blend it with more poetic expression, as in Millers Death of a Salesman (1949), Williamss The Glass Menagerie (1944), and Thornton Wilders Our Town and The Skin of Our Teeth.Hellman became one of Americas leading playwrights and an outstanding master of the social and psychological play in the modern American theatre.Hellman was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. At the age of five her parents moved to New York. However, she was to return to New Orleans periodically. She preferred life in that Southern city.studied at New York University for three years, but left the university before taking a degree. Later she studied for a short time at Columbia University.the age of nineteen she went to work for a publishing firm. She tried her hand at book reviews and short stories and for a while wrote theatrical reviews. She also spent some time as a play-reader in Hollywood.1932 she returned to New York where she worked as a play-reader for Herman Shumlin, who was later to produce and direct her first five plays. In 1934 she launched on her career as a playwright with The Childrens Hour. Over the next three decades came a. succession of plays, among them The Little Foxes (1939), Watch on the Rhine (1941), Another Part of the Forest (1947), The Autumn Garden (1951) and Toys in the Attic (I960). Lillian Hellman was the author of some adaptations: My Mother, My Father and Me (1936), Montserrat (1950) and The Lark (1956). She also wrote an operette Candide (1957), and The Big Knockover: stories and short novels by Dashie Hammett (1966).wrote an autobiography called Scoundrel Time.Hellman has twice been awarded the New York Drama Critics Circle Prize for the best play of the year - Watch on the Rhine and Toys in the Attic. In 1972 an edition of all her works for the theatre was published as The Collected Plays.s memoirs An Unfinished Woman (1969) was the winner of the National Book Award. She also received the Gold Medal for Drama from the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and other awards, and also honorary degrees from various colleges and universities, in recent years Hellman has been teaching at the University of California and at Hunter College.Hellman has devoted all her life to literature and the theatre. She reviewed books and plays for publishing houses (1927-1930), worked as a critic for the newspaper Herald Tribune (1925-1928) and wrote some scripts for Hollywood. She was the author of a film script Northern Star, which is about a Soviet kolkhoz during the Great Patriotic War.enriched the traditions of the American progressive theatre and the world theatre - the traditions of Ibsen, Chekhov, Gorky.of Lillian Hellmans plays, The Little Foxes and The Autumn Garden, are particularly interesting.this play Hellman deals with human relations in a society, based upon money. The following epigraph precedes the play: Take from us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes. The title of the play symbolizes the playwrights thesis that greed creates havoc among, humans. The tender grapes are the gentle characters, especially young Alexandra. As is often the ease in Miss Hellmans plays, she applies her thesis on both a personal and general social level. Here she is always saying that capitalistic greed exploits the lower economic sectors of society.summary of the play as given in L. R. Holmins book is: Ben and Oscar Hubbard and their sister Pegina Giddens are members of an avaricious clan in a small Southern town in 1900. They represent the rise of the industrial South in its most ruthless aspect. Oscars gentle wife, Birdie, represents the old aristocracy, which the new order is replacing. In the social gathering which opens the play, we see the manner in which this new breed, rising from the poor whites, attempts to ape the cultural graces of the passing order.Chicago tycoon paying a visit is willing to-put up 400,000 dollars for the building of a cotton mill in the Southern town, where cheap costs and cheap labour will make high profits possible. Ben, Oscar and Regina are each to put up one-third of the remaining 225,000 dollars required for the financing of the project. For this investment they will receive 51% of the stock in the firm.struggle ensues between Regina and her husband, Horace Giddens, who is very ill with a heart ailment, over his unwillingness to put up their third. It is over this contest for money that we see first one, then another of the little foxes achieve the upper hand in their vicious talk among themselves. When Horace finds that Oscars son Leon has, with Ben and Oscars blessing, borrowed bonds from his safe deposit box for the project, he balks. He tells his wife, who despises him, that his vengeance on her is to pretend he loaned the bonds to the brothers and to write a new will which will cut off her dreams of going to Chicago to live a life of ease in society there. Her viciousness knows no bounds when she allows him to die by refusing to give him his medicine needed to prevent a heart attack, thus adding murder to her bag of tricks. Once again in power, she threatens the Hubbard men with exposure and demands three-fourths of the profit of the enterprise. Brother Ben accepts the arrangement, temporarily we feel, with a humor which has characterized brother and sister in their dog-eat-dog contest. Regina, however, is faced with what seems to the audience a hollow victory, when her daughter Alexandra, finally aroused, announces that she is leaving home to escape from the Hubbard influence.Millers best work, Death of a Salesman, is one of the most successful in fusing the realistic and the imaginative; in all of his other plays, however, Miller is the master of realism. He is a true disciple of Henrik Ibsen, not only in his realistic technique, but in his concern about societys impact on his characters lives.Miller created more directly social plays based on an ambiguity of images, whether defined in a family or broader cultural sense. Death of a Salesman (1949), the account of Willy Lomans tragic struggle with the law of success, became another classic. The Crucible (1953), in which the Salem witch-hunts are used as a parable (witchcraft trials of the 17th century in which Puritan settlers were wrongly executed as supposed witches), and A View from the Bridge (1955) enhanced his reputation.Millers plays, the course of the action and the development of character depend not only on the characters psychological makeup, but also on the social, philosophical, and economic atmosphere of their times.s most notable character, Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman, is a self-deluded man; but he is also a product of the American dream of success and a victim of the American business machine, which disposes of him when he has outlived his usefulness. Loman has worked for Howard Wagners company for thirty-six years. He has opened new markets for their trademark. Wagners father promised him a job in New York, but Howard does not need him in town and fires him altogether. Willy realizes the futility of his dreams. He has been squeezed out and when he is unable to bring in a large profit he is dismissed. I put thirty-six years into this firm. You cant eat the orange and throw the peel away - a man is not a piece of fruit, he says bitterly. Having lost the sense of personal dignity, Willy decides to make a sacrifice for those he loves - he commits suicide in order that his sons, Biff and Happy, should get the insurance money and start a a writer of high moral seriousness, whether he is dealing with personal versus social responsibility, as in All My Sons (1947), or with witch hunts past and present, as in The Crucible. Both are political - one contemporary, and the other set in colonial times. The first deals with a manufacturer who knowingly allows defective parts to be shipped to airplane firms during World War II, resulting in the death of his son and others.writes a plain and muscular prose that under the force of emotion often becomes eloquent, as in Linda Lomans famous speech in Death of a Salesman, where she talks to her two sons about their father: I dont say hes a great man. Willy Loman never made a lot of money. His name was never in the paper. Hes not the finest character that ever lived. But hes a human being, and a terrible thing is happening to him. So attention must be paid. Hes not to be allowed to fall into his grave like an old dog. Attention, attention must finally be paid to such a person.Williams (born as Thomas Lanier Williams) (1911-1983) was born in Columbus, Mississippi. He changed his name when he left home for New Orleans. It had been his college nickname because his father was from Tennessee.Williams wrote two novels, The Roman Spring of Mrs.Stone (1950) and Moise and the World of Reason (1975), and a novella, The Knightly Quest (1966). He is the author of collection of stories One Arm (1948), Hard Candy (1954), Eight Mortal Ladies Possessed (1974), and a collection of poetry In the Winter of Cities (1956).he is valued most of all as a playwright. Tennessee Williams showed his mastery of dialogue and movement on the stage in a series of plays. They treat the emotional involvements and frustrations with which Williams chiefly concerned himself. Although Tennessee Williams was Millers contemporary, his concern was not with social matters, but with personal ones. If Miller is often the playwright of social conscience, then Williams was the playwright of our souls. His earlier works were in production around the world. He dominated the American theatre for twenty years, beginning with Battle of Angels (1940). It was the first play to bring him public attention, and it evolved into Orpheus Descending (1957). He won national acclaim with The Glass Menagerie (1945) and A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Summer and Smoke (1948), The Rose Tattoo (.1950), Camino Real (1953), Cat on a Hot Roof (1955), Garden District (1958), Suddenly Last Summer (1958), Sweet Bird of Youth (1959), Period of Adjustment (1960), The Night of the Iguana (1962). All these plays were made into films, and he wrote an original film script for Baby Doll (1956). In the mid-sixties, he started writing the darker plays of his late phase, beginning with Slapstick Tragedy (1965), which includes The Mutilated and Gnadiges Fraulein; The Seven Descents of Myrtle (1968); In the Bar of a Tokyo Hotel (1969); The Two Character Play (1969), later rewritten and staged as Out City (1973), The Red Devil Battery Sign (1976), A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur (1979), and a play about Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald entitled Clothes for a Summer Hotel (1980).contrast to Millers spare, plain language, Williamss writing is delicate and sensuous; it is often colored with lush imagery and evocative rhythms. Millers characters are, by and large, ordinary people with whom we identify because they are caught up in .the social tensions of our times. Williamss characters are often women who are Lost ladies, drowning in their own neuroses, but somehow mirroring a part of our own complex psychological selves.actual scenes in Williamss plays are usually purely realistic, even though these scenes may deal with colorful and extreme characters. But Williams usually theatricalized the realism with music in the wings or symbolic props, such as Lauras unicorn in The Glass Menagerie or the looming statue of Eternity in Summer and Smoke (1948). He always conceived his plays in visually arresting, colorful, theatrical environments.Glass Menagerie has become an American classic. When it was shown on Broadway in the spring of 1945, Mississippi-born Tennessee Williams was practically unknown; almost over-night, he became an international success.Glass Menagerie is a mixture of straightforward, realistic play construction and poetic, highly imaginative conception and language. Williams used this combination for most of his works. The structure of his plays is basically conventional; his vision, his voice, is imaginative and sensitive.The Glass Menagerie is a memory play, its images are hazy. The characters, too, are poetically conceived and removed from the daily life of the Great Depression of the 1930s. In a few lines in the opening narration, Williams sets the social background of the period; but he is not really interested in the larger society. In all his plays, what interests him most is the psychological makeup of his characters. Laura Wingfield passes her life listening to phonograph records and rearranging her collection of glass animals. Tom wants to be a writer and to escape to the sea. Amanda lives in the past glories of being a Southern belle. In contrast to the Wingfield family, the gentleman caller is not poetic. He is from the real world, and it is the touching confrontation of this real man with the withdrawn Laura that provides the climax of the after play, Tennessee Williams probed the psychological complexities of his characters. Though Williams became known principally for his colorful women characters - Amanda and Laura in The Glass Menagerie, Blanche in A Streetcar Named Desire, Alma in Summer and Smoke, and Maggie in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof - he also created some great male characters, among them Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire. Marlon Brandos portrayal of Stanley in the original production, and in the movie, established a kind of mumbling, torn-Tee-shirt technique of acting that was to become popular with many of the younger male actors of the next decade.

Comprehension Questions and Tasks

1. Explain the term slice of life dramatic technique. Comment on the drama in USA in the XIX-th century. What influenced the modern American drama?

. What was new in the little theatres that appeared in America in the twenties? How was contemporary America reflected in ONeills plays? Comment on the play Beyond the Horizon. Why does Lillian Hellman speak of some of her characters in The Little Foxes as tender grapes? Comment on ONeills and Hellmans contribution to the world theatre.

. What is the central idea of the play Death of Salesman written by Arthur Miller? How can we characterize the talent and place of Arthur Miller in the literary trend?

. What are the chief characteristics of Tennesee Williams plays? Comment on his women characters. How does Williams combine serious and ridiculous material in his works?


Adventure novel - a novel where exciting events are more important than character development and sometimes theme.- the emphasis, or stress, given a syllable in pronunciation. Accents can also be used to emphasize a particular word in a sentence.- a major division in the action of a play. The ends of acts are typically indicated by lowering the curtain or turning up the houselights. Playwrights frequently employ acts to accommodate changes in time, setting, characters onstage, or mood. In many full-length plays, acts are further divided into scenes, which often mark a point in the action when the location changes or when a new character enters.- a figurative work in which a surface narrative carries a secondary, symbolic or metaphorical meaning. Many works contain allegories or are allegorical in part, but not many are entirely allegorical.- the repetition of the same consonant sounds in a sequence of words, usually at the beginning of a word or stressed syllable: descending dew drops; luscious lemons. Alliteration is based on the sounds of letters, rather than the spelling of words; for example, keen and car alliterate, but car and cite do not. Used sparingly, alliteration can intensify ideas by emphasizing key words, but when used too self-consciously, it can be distracting, even ridiculous, rather than effective.- a reference in a literary work to a person, place, or thing in history or another work of literature. Allusions are often indirect or brief references to well-known characters or events.- a word or phrase made from the letters of another word or phrase, as heart is an anagram of earth. Anagrams have often been considered merely an exercise of ones ingenuity, but sometimes writers use anagrams to conceal proper names or veiled messages, or to suggest important connections between words, as in hated and death.- a kind of metrical foot. An anapest (or anapaest) comprises two unstressed syllables and one stressed one (e.g.: unabridged, intercede, on the loose). Because an anapest has three syllables per foot, its called a triple meter.- a very short tale told by a character in a literary work.- a character in a story or poem who deceives, frustrates, or works again the main character, or protagonist, in some way. The antagonist doesnt necessarily have to be a person. It could be death, the devil, an illness, or any challenge that prevents the main character from living happily ever after. In fact, the antagonist could be a character of virtue in a literary work where the protagonist represents evil.- a protagonist who has the opposite of most of the traditional attributes of a hero. He or she may be bewildered, ineffectual, deluded, or merely pathetic. Often what antiheroes leam, if they learn anything at all, is that the world isolates them in an existence devoid of God and absolute values.- a brief statement which expresses an observation on life, usually intended as a wise observation.- a moral fable, usually featuring personified animals or inanimate objects which act like people to allow the author to comment on the human condition. Often, the apologue highlights the irrationality of mankind.- an address, either to someone who is absent and therefore cannot hear the speaker or to something nonhuman that cannot comprehend. Apostrophe often provides a speaker the opportunity to think aloud.- a term used to describe universal symbols that evoke deep and sometimes unconscious responses in a reader. In literature, characters, images, and themes that symbolically embody universal meanings and basic human experiences, regardless of when or where they live, are considered archetypes. Common literary archetypes include stories of quests, initiations, scapegoats, descents to the underworld, and ascents to heaven.- the repetition of internal vowel sounds in nearby words that do not end the same, for example, asleep under a tree, or each evening. Similar endings result in rhyme, as in asleep in the deep. Assonance is a strong means of emphasizing important words in a line.novel - novel based on the authors life experience.- the story of a persons life written by himself or herself.- a narrative folk song. The ballad is traced back to the Middle Ages. Ballads were usually created by common people and passed orally due to the illiteracy of the time. Subjects for ballads include killings, feuds, important historical events and rebellion. In addition to being entertaining, ballads can help to understand a given culture by showing us what values or norms that culture deemed important.- the story of a persons life written by someone other than the subject of the work. A biographical work is supposed to be rigorously factual. verse - unrhymed iambic pentameter. It is the English verse form closest to the natural rhythms of English speech and therefore is the most common pattern found in traditional English narrative and dramatic poetry from W. Shakespeare to the early 20th century.- a person, or any thing presented as a person (e. g.: a spirit, object, animal, or natural force). In a cartoon scene, firemen may be putting out a fire which a coyote has deliberately started, while a hydrant observes the scene fearfully. The firemen, the coyote and the hydrant would all be considered characters in the story. If a billowy figure complete with eyes, nose, and moutly representing the wind thwarts the efforts of the firemen, the wind, too, qualifies as a character. Animals who figure importantly in movies of live drama are considered characters.- a movement or tendency in art, music, and literature to retain the characteristics found in work originating in classical Greece and Rome. It differs from Romanticism in that while Romanticism dwells on the emotional impact of a work, classicism concerns itself with form and discipline.- the decisive moment in a drama, the climax is the turning point of the play to which the rising action leads. This is the crucial part of the drama, the part which determines the outcome of the conflict.- a literary work which is amusing and ends happily. Modern comedies tend to be funny. Comedies may contain lovers, those who interfere with lovers, and entertaining scoundrels. In modern Situation Comedies, characters are thrown into absurd situations and are forced to deal with those situations, all the while reciting clever lines for the amusement of a live or television or movie audience.of-age story - a type of novel where the protagonist is initiated into adulthood through knowledge, experience, or both, often by a process of disillusionment. Understanding comes after the dropping of preconceptions, a destruction of a false sense of security, or in some way the loss of innocence. Some of the shifts that take place are these: ignorance to knowledge; innocence to experience; false view of world to correct view; idealism to realism immature responses to mature responses.- an elaborate, usually intellectually ingenious poetic comparison or image, such as an analogy or metaphor in which, say a beloved is compared to a ship, planet, etc. The comparison may be brief or extended.- the struggle within the plot between opposing forces. The protagonist engages in the conflict with the antagonist, which may take the form of a character, society, nature, or an aspect of the protagonists personality.- associations and implications that go beyond the literal meaning of a word, which derive from how the word has been commonly used and the associations people make with it: (e.g.: the word eagle connotes ideas of liberty and freedom that have little to do with the word's literal meaning).- a style of poetry defined as a complete thought written in two lines with rhyming ends.- the exact meaning of a word, without the feelings or suggestions that the word may imply. It is the opposite of connotation in that it is the dictionary meaning of a word, without attached feelings or associations: (e.g.: heart: an organ that circulates blood throughout the body. Here the word heart denotes the actual organ, while in another context, the word heart may connote feelings of love or heartache). Denotation allows the reader to know the exact meaning of a word so that he/she will better understand the work of literature.novel - a novel focusing on the solving of a crime, often by a brilliant detective, and usually employing the elements of mystery and suspense: (e.g.: Agatha Christie The Murder of Roger Ackroyd).- the verbal exchanges between characters. Dialogue makes the characters seem real to the reader or audience by revealing firsthand their thoughts, responses, and emotional states.- derived from the Greek word dram, meaning to do or to perform, the term drama may refer to a single play, a group of plays, or to all plays (world drama). Drama is designed for performance in a theater; actors take on the roles of characters, perform indicated actions, and speak the dialogue written in the script.monologue - a literary device that is used when a character reveals his/her innermost thoughts and feelings, those that are hidden throughout the course of the story line, through a poem or a speech. This speech, where only one character speaks, is recited while other characters are present onstage. This monologue often comes during a climactic moment in a work and often reveals hidden truths about a character, their history and their relationships. Also it can further develop a characters personality and also be used to create irony.- a type of literature defined as a song or poem, written in elegiac couplets, that expresses sorrow or lamentation, usually for one who has died. This type of work stemmed out of a Greek work known as a elegus, a song of mourning or lamentation that is accompanied by the flute.- a long narrative poem, told in a formal, elevated style, that focuses on a serious subject and chronicles heroic deeds and events important to a culture or nation. 38. Epigram - a brief, pointed, and witty poem that usually makes a satiric or humorous point. Epigrams are most often written in couplets, but take no prescribed form.- the substitution of a mild or less negative word or phrase for a harsh or blunt one (e.g.: the use of pass away instead of die). The basic psychology of euphemistic language is the desire to put something bad or embarrassing in a positive (or at least neutral light). Thus many terms referring to death, sex, crime, and excremental functions are euphemisms. Since the euphemism is often chosen to disguise something horrifying, it can be exploited by the satirist through the use of irony and exaggeration.- a narrative device, often used at the beginning of a work, which provides necessary background information about the characters and their circumstances. Exposition explains what has gone on before, the relationships between characters, the development of a theme, and the introduction of a conflict.- a story that teaches a lesson, with people who have never actually existed or animals who behave like human beings.novel - any novel that is disengaged from reality. Often such novels are set in nonexistent worlds, such as under the earth, in a fairyland, on the moon, etc. The characters are often something other than human or include nonhuman characters.- the word fiction comes orignally from Latin fingere, to fashion or to form. Fiction is usually narrative, although it can be either verse or prose.language - a type of language that varies from the norms of literal language, in which words mean exactly what they say. Also known as the ornaments of language, figurative language does not mean exactly what it says, but instead forces the reader to make an imaginative leap in order to comprehend an authors point. It usually involves a comparison between two things that may not, at first, seem to relate to one another (e.g.: in a simile an author may compare a person to an animal: He ran like a hare down the street is the figurative way to describe the man running and He ran very quickly down the street is the literal way to describe him). Figurative language facilitates understanding because it relates something unfamiliar to something familiar.- device that allows the writer to present events that happened before the time of the current narration or the current events in the fiction. Flashback techniques include memories, dreams, stories of the past told by characters, or even authorial sovereignty.- is the basis of meter; the regular unit of rthythm which, when repeated, makes up a verse. Although the basis of meter in the classical languages was quantitative - i.e., long and short syllables were based on the actual amount of time it took to speak the syllables - and some English poets made experiments in this direction, virtually all English feet are based on a pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables. Still, the terms are usually imported from Greek and Latin versification, and you may hear long and short where stressed and unstressed are meant. Each common foot comprises two or three syllables: either one or two stressed syllables, and zero, one, or two unstressed syllables.- a narrative structure that provides a setting and exposition for the main narrative in a novel. Often, a narrator will describe where he found the manuscript of the novel or where he heard someone tell the story he is about to relate. The frame helps control the readers perception of the work, and has been used in the past to help give credibility to the main section of the novel.verse - a verse that has neither regular rhyme nor regular meter. Free verse often uses cadences rather than uniform metrical feet.- a type of literature. A poem, novel, story, or other literary work belongs to a particular genre if it shares at least a few conventions, or standard characteristics, with other works in that genre (e.g.: works in the Gothic genre often feature supernatural elements, attempts to horrify the reader, and dark, foreboding settings, particularly very old castles or mansions - E.A.Poe The Fall of the House of Usher). Other genres include the pastoral poem, epic poem, elegy, tragic drama, and bildungsroman. An understanding of genre is useful because it helps us to see how an author adopts, subverts, or transcends the standard practices that other authors have developed.- an extravagant exaggeration. From the Greek for «overcasting», hyperbole is a figure of speech that is a grossly exaggerated description or statement. In literature, such exaggeration is used for emphasis or vivid descriptions. In drama, hyperbole is quite common, especially in heroic drama.novel - a novel where fictional characters take part in actual historical events and interact with real people from the past.- the new emphasis in the Renaissance on human culture, education and reason, sparked by a revival of interest in classical Greek and Roman literature, culture, and language. Human nature and the dignity of man were exalted and emphasis was placed on the present life as a worthy event in itself (as opposed to the medieval emphasis on the present life merely as preparation for a future life).- a word or group of words in a literary work which appeal to one or more of the senses: sight, taste, touch, hearing, and smell. The use of images serves to intensify the impact of the work.- a literary term referring to how a person, situation, statement, or circumstance is not as it would actually seem. Many times it is the exact opposite of what it appears to be. Irony spices up a literary work by adding unexpected twists and allowing the reader to become more involved with the characters and plot. There are many types of irony, the three most common: 1) verbal irony, 2) dramatic irony, 3) cosmic irony. 1) Verbal irony occurs when either the speaker means something totally different than what he is saying or the audience realizes, because of their knowledge of the particular situation to which the speaker is referring, that the opposite of what a character is saying is true. Verbal irony also occurs when a character says something in jest that, in actuality, is true. 2) Dramatic irony occurs when facts are not known to the characters in a work of literature but are known by the audience. 3) Cosmic irony suggests that some unknown force brings about dire and dreadful events.- a lyric is a song-like poem written mainly to express the feelings of emotions or thought from a particular person, thus separating it from narrative poems. These poems are generally short, averaging roughly twelve to thirty lines, and rarely go beyond sixty lines. These poems express vivid imagination as well as emotion and all flow fairly concisely. Because of this aspect, as well as their steady rhythm, they were often used in song. In fact, most people still see a lyric as anything that is sung along to a musical instrument. It is believed that the lyric began in its earliest stage in Ancient Egypt around 2600 BC in the forms of elegies, odes, or hymns generated out of religious ceremonies. Some of the more note-worthy authors who have used the lyric include W. Blake, W. Wordsworth, J. Keats, and W. Shakespeare - who helped popularize the sonnet, another type of lyric.- a figure of speech wherein a comparison is made between two unlike quantities without the use of the words like or as.- the rhythmic pattern produced when words are arranged so that their stressed and unstressed syllables fall into a more or less regular sequence, resulting in repeated patterns of accent (called feet).- a figure of speech in which a word represents something else which it suggests (e.g.: in a herd of fifty cows, the herd might be referred to as fifty head of cattle. The word head is the word representing the herd).novel - novel whose driving characteristic is the element of suspense or mystery. Strange, unexplained events, vague threats or terrors, unknown forces or antagonists, all may appear in a mystery novel. Gothic novels and detective novels are often also mystery novels.- a collection of events that tells a story, which may be true or not, placed in a particular order and recounted through either telling or writing. By understanding the term narrative, one begins to understand that most literary works have a simple outline: the story, the plot, and the storyteller. By studying more closely, most novels and short stories are placed into the categories of first-person and third-person narratives, which are based on who is telling the story and from what perspective. Other important terms that relate to the term narrative, are narrative poetry and narrative technique.- one who tells a story, the speaker or the voice of an oral or written work. Although it can be, the narrator is not usually the same person as the author. The narrator is one of three types of characters in a given work: 1) participant (protagonist or participant in any action that may take place in the story), 2) observer (someone who is indirectly involved in the action of a story), or 3) non participant (one who is not at all involved in any action of the story).- an extended prose fiction narrative of 50,000 words or more, broadly realistic - concerning the everyday events of ordinary people - and concerned with character. A fictional prose work of substantial length. People in significant action is one way of describing it. Another definition might be an extended, fictional prose narrative about realistic characters and events. It is a representation of life, experience, and learning. Action, discovery, and description are important elements, but the most important tends to be one or more characters - how they grow, learn, find - or dont grow, learn, or find.- a prose fiction longer than a short story but shorter than a novel. There is no standard definition of length, but since rules of thumb are sometimes handy, we might say that the short story ends at about 20.000 words.of manners - a novel focusing on and describing in detail the social customs and habits of a particular social group. Usually these conventions function as shaping or even stifling controls over the behavior of the characters. - a poem in praise of something divine or expressing some noble idea.- the narrator, or the storyteller, of a literary work created by the author.- the structure of a story. Or the sequence in which the author arranges events in a story. The structure of a five-act play often includes the rising action, the climax, the falling action, and the resolution. The plot may have a protagonist who is opposed by antagonist, creating what is called, conflict. A plot may include flashback or it may include a subplot which is a mirror image of the main plot.- is a general term for a work of dramatic literature.- is a writer who makes plays.- the opening speech or dialogue of a play, especially a classic Greek play, that usually gives the exposition necessary to follow the subsequent action. Today the term also refers to the introduction to any literary work.- a protagonist is considered to be the main character or lead figure in a novel, play, story, or poem. It may also be referred to as the «hero» of a work. Over a period of time the meaning of the term protagonist has changed. The word protagonist originated in ancient Greek drama and referred to the leader of a chorus. Soon the definition was changed to represent the first actor onstage. In some literature today it may be difficult to decide who is playing the role of the protagonist.- a false name or alias used by a writer desiring not to use his or her real name. Sometimes called a nom de plume or «pen name», pseudonyms have been popular for several reasons: 1) political realities might make it dangerous for the real author to admit to a work. Beatings, imprisonment, and even execution are not unheard of for authors of unpopular works; 2) an author might have a certain type of work associated with a certain name, so that different names are used for different kinds of work. One pen name might be used for westerns, while another name would be used for science fiction; 3) an author might choose a literary name that sounds more impressive or that will gamer more respect than the author's real name.criticism - an approach to literature that draws upon psychoanalytic theories, especially those of S.Freud or J.Lacan to understand more fully the text, the writer, and the reader. The basis of this approach is the idea of the existence of a human unconscious - those impulses, desires, and feelings about which a person is unaware but which influence emotions and behavior. Critics use psychological approaches to explore the motivations of characters and the symbolic meanings of events, while biographers speculate about a writer's own motivations - conscious or unconscious - in a literary work. Psychological approaches are also used to describe and analyze the readers personal responses to a text.fiction - novels written for the mass market, intended to be a good read, - often exciting, titillating, thrilling. Historically they have been very popular but critically sneered at as being of sub-literary quality. The earliest ones were the dime novels of the 19th century, printed on newsprint (hence pulp fiction) and sold for ten cents.- the moment in a story when previously unknown or withheld information is revealed to the protagonist, resulting in the discovery of the truth of his or her situation and, usually, a decisive change in course for that character.- the part of a story or drama which occurs after the climax and which establishes a new norm, a new state of affairs-the way things are going to be from then on.- (also spelled rime) - the similarity between syllable sounds at the end of two or more lines. Some kinds of rhyme include: couplet - a pair of lines rhyming consecutively; eye rhyme - words whose spellings would lead one to think that they rhymed (e.g.: slough / tough / cough / bough / though / hiccough; love / move / prove; daughter / laughter); feminine rhyme - two syllable rhyme consisting of stressed syllable followed by unstressed; masculine rhyme - similarity between terminally stressed syllables.- the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in a line of verse or (less often) prose.- an extended fictional prose narrative about improbable events involving characters that are quite different from ordinary people. Knights on a quest for a magic sword and aided by characters like fairies and trolls would be examples of things found in romance fiction. In popular use, the modem romance novel is a formulaic love story (boy meets girl, obstacles interfere, they overcome obstacles, they live happily ever after). Computer software is available for constructing these stock plots and providing stereotyped characters. Consequently, the books usually lack literary merit.- a story of the exploits of a hero, or the story of a family told through several generations.- literary mode based on criticism of people and society through ridicule. The satirist aims to reduce the practices attacked by laughing scornfully at them - and being witty enough to allow the reader to laugh, also. Ridicule, irony, exaggeration, and several other techniques are almost always present. The satirist may insert serious statements of value or desired behavior, but most often he relies on an implicit moral code, understood by his audience and paid lip service by them. The satirists goal is to point out the hypocrisy of his target in the hope that either the target or the audience will return to a real following of the code. Thus, satire is inescapably moral even when no explicit values are promoted in the work, for the satirist works within the framework of a widely spread value system. Many of the techniques of satire are devices of comparison, to show the similarity or contrast between two things.- a form of sneering criticism in which disapproval is often expressed as ironic praise.- in drama, a scene is a subdivision of an act. In modem plays, scenes usually consist of units of action in which there are no changes in the setting or breaks in the continuity of time. According to traditional conventions, a scene changes when the location of the action shifts or when a new character enters.- the written text of a play, which includes the dialogue between characters, stage directions, and often other expository information.Action novel - a novel in which futuristic technology or otherwise altered scientific principles contribute in a significant way to the adventures. Often the novel assumes a set of rules or principles or facts and then traces their logical consequences in some form.novel - a type of novel, popular in the 18lh century, that overemphasizes emotion and seeks to create emotional responses in the reader. The type also usually features an overly optimistic view of the goodness of human nature.- a novel incorporating the same characters and often the same setting as a previous novel. Sometimes the events and situations involve a continuation of the previous novel and sometimes only the characters are the same and the events are entirely unrelated to the previous novel. Occasionally a sequel is written by an author different from that of the original novel.- several novels related to each other, by plot, setting, character, or all three. Book marketers like to refer to multi-volume novels as sagas.- the time, place, physical details, and circumstances in which a situation occurs. Settings include the background, atmosphere or environment in which characters live and move, and usually include physical characteristics of the surroundings. Settings enable the reader to better envision how a story unfolds by relating necessary physical details of a piece of literature. A setting may be simple or elaborate, used to create ambiance, lend credibility or realism, emphasize or accentuate, organize, or even distract the reader.story - a short fictional narrative. It is difficult to set forth the point at which a short story becomes a short novel (novelette), or the page number at which a novelette becomes a novel: (e.g.: E.Hemingway Big Two-Hearted River - a short story; J.Steinbecks Of Mice and Men - a novelette; Graham Green Our Man in Havana - a novel).- a common figure of speech that makes an explicit comparison between two things by using words such as like, as, than, appears, and seems. The effectiveness of this simile is created by the differences between the two things compared.criticism - an approach to literature that examines social groups, relationships, and values as they are manifested in literature. Sociological approaches emphasize the nature and effect of the social forces that shape power relationships between groups or classes of people. Such readings treat literature as either a document reflecting social conditions or a product of those conditions. The former view brings into focus the social milieu; the latter emphasizes the work. Two important forms of sociological criticism are Marxist and feminist approaches.- a sonnet is a distinctive poetic style that uses system or pattern of metrical structure and verse composition usually consisting of fourteen lines, arranged in a set rhyme scheme or pattern. There are two main styles of sonnet, the Italian sonnet and the English sonnet. Usually written in iambic pentameter, it consists first of an octave, or eight lines, which asks a question or states a problem or proposition; the sestet, or last six lines, offers an answer, or a resolution to the proposed problem.- an authors method of treating a character so that the character is immediately identified with a group. A character may be associated with a group through accent, food choices, style of dress, or any readily identifiable group characteristic.- the manner of expression of a particular writer, produced by choice of words, grammatical structures, use of literary devices, and all the possible parts of language use. Some general styles might include scientific, ornate, plain, emotive. Most writers have their own particular styles.- a subordinate or minor collection of events in a novel or drama. Most subplots have some connection with the main plot, acting as foils to, commentary on, complications of, or support to the theme of, the main plot. Sometimes two opening subplots merge into a main plot.- a person, object, image, word, or event that evokes a range of additional meaning beyond and usually more abstract than its literal significance. Symbols are educational devices for evoking complex ideas without having to resort to painstaking explanations that would make a story more like an essay than an experience. Conventional symbols have meanings that are widely recognized by a society or culture. Writers use them to reinforce meanings. A literary or contextual symbol can be a setting, character, action, object, name, or anything else in a work that maintains its literal significance while suggesting other meanings. Such symbols go beyond conventional symbols; they gain their symbolic meaning within the context of a specific story.(theem) - a common thread or repeated idea that is incorporated throughout a literary work. A theme is a thought or idea the author presents to the reader that may be deep, difficult to understand, or even moralistic. Generally, a theme has to be extracted as the reader explores the passages of a work. The author utilizes the characters, plot, and other literary devices to assist the reader in this endeavor.- the writers attitude toward his readers and his subject; his mood or moral view. A writer can be formal, informal, playful, ironic, and especially, optimistic or pessimistic. - is a type of drama which is pre-eminently the story of one person, the hero. The story depicts the trouble part of the heros life in which a total reversal of fortune comes upon a person who formerly stood in high degree, apparently secure, sometimes even happy. The suffering and calamity in a tragedy are exceptional, since they befall a conspicuous person. Moreover, the suffering and calamity spread far and wide until the whole scene becomes a scene of woe. The story leads up to and includes the death or moral destruction of the protagonist.- a work that treats a serious subject frivolously - ridiculing the dignified. Often the tone is mock serious and heavy handed.- a statement which lessens or minimizes the importance of what is meant.narrator - one who gives his or her own understanding of a story, instead of the explanation and interpretation the author wishes the audience to obtain. This type of action tends to alter the audiences opinion of the conclusion. - how fully the characters and actions in a work of fiction conform to our sense of reality. To say that a work has a high degree of verisimilitude means that the work is very realistic and believable - it is true to life.- generally, the structural form of a verse, as revealed by scansion. Identification of verse structure includes the name of the metrical type and the name designating number of feet. The most common verse in English poetry is iambic pentameter.


1. David H.Richter. The Borzoi Book of Short Fiction. New York, Alfred A.Knopf, Inc., 1983. - 1440 p.

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. Adventures in English Literature. Classic edition. New York, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc., 1973. - 867 p.

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. R.S.Gwynn. Fiction. A Pocket Anthology. Third edition. New York, Penguin Academics, 2002. - 437 p.

. A.L.Stronach. Simple History of English Literature. With Illustrative Extracts. London, Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1911. - 276 p.

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. An Early American Reader. Edited by J.A.Leo Lemay. Washington, Published by the United States Information Agency, 1992. - 741 p.

. Highlights of American Literature. Based upon a core manuscript by Dr.Carl Bode, University of Maryland. Washington, Published by the United States Information Agency, 1988. - 288 p.

. Elements of Literature. Six course. Literature of Britain. Orlando, Florida, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Inc., Harcourt Brace Jovanovich., 1993. - 1247 p.

. Gower R. Past Into Present: An Anthology of British and American Literature.

London: W.W. Norton, 1998. - 733 p.

. Sanders A. The Short Oxford History of English Literature. - New-York: Oxford University Press, 2000. - 732 p.

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