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2-20-06 - American Culture in the Great Depression

2-20-06 - American Culture in the Great Depression -...

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American Culture in the Great Depression 2/20/06 1. Trends in Writing a. Documentary Impulse i. Definition 1. Quest for social fact 2. Writers deem writing to be irrelevant – Fiction is on the out ii. Life feels unpredictable 1. Loss of personal identity iii. Writers turn to journalism 1. Writers travel America in search of the aspirations of everyday people 2. Writers immerse themselves in the dark, depressing world of everyday people 3. Observations a. Individualism/materialism is decreasing b. Crisis does not spur revolt – people lower their standard of living and hope for more next year c. Failure encouraged shame, not militancy b. Writers continue writing fiction i. Grapes of Wrath 1. Narrative about migrant agricultural workers from Midwest to California 2. How to continue writing narratives 3. Story about white protestants 4. Conveys the notion that patience was more important than revolution ii. Factories in the Fields 1. Carry McWilliams 2. Factory workers searching for representations in all forms iii.
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