Brian Kiteley

1925: A Year in Literature and History

(This is a course I haven't taught yet)

These were among the books published in 1925:

Sherwood Anderson, Dark Laughter
Willa Cather, The Professor's House
Ivy Compton-Burnett, Pastors and Masters
Hilda Doolittle, Collected Poems of H.D.
John Dos Passos, Manhattan Transfer
Theodore Dreiser, An American Tragedy
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf
Liam O'Flaherty, The Informer
Ford Madox Ford, No More Parades
André Gide, The Counterfeiters
Ernest Hemingway, In Our Time
Franz Kafka, The Trial
Sinclair Lewis, Arrowsmith
Anita Loos, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
T. S. Eliot, Poems 1909-1925
Ezra Pound, Cantos (the first volume)
Thomas Hardy, Human Shows
I. A. Richards, Science and Poetry 
Gertrude Stein, The Making of Americans
Alfred North Whitehead, Science and the Modern World
William Carlos Williams, In the American Grain
P. G. Wodehouse, Carry On, Jeeves and Sam the Sudden
Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway
W. B. Yeats, A Vision

The Three Dancers and The Statuary by Pablo Picasso; The Apprentice by Georges Rouault; Still Life with Vase of Anemones, Lemons and Pineapple, and Jetee de Fleurs Dans un Interieur by Henri Matisse; After the Meal by Pierre Bonnard; The Drinking Green Pig by Marc Chagall; Swinging by Wassily Kandinsky; and Disquieting Muses and The Greek Philoophers by Giorgio de Chirico were painted in 1925.  Charles Chaplin's The Gold Rush, Sergei Eisenstein's Potemkin, Go West with Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd's The Freshman all appeared in 1925.

In 1925, T. S. Eliot joined the publishing house of Faber & Gwyer, leaving Lloyds bank, and he wrote, "This is the way the world ends/not with a bang but a whimper."  Ezra Pound returned to Rapallo, Italy from Sicily to stay there permanently after a brief stay the year before.  F Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway met in the Dingo Bar on rue Delambre, in Montparnasse, Paris, shortly after the publication of Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby.  Edwin Arlington Robinson won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for The Man Who Died Twice, Edna Ferber won the Pulitzer Prize for the Novel for So Big, and George Bernard Shaw won the Nobel Prize for Literature.  The Jazz Age was in full swing.  Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington made their first recordings.  Alban Berg's Wozzeck and George and Ira Gershwin's Tip-Toes each premiered.  Calvin Coolidge was President and he said, "The chief business of the American people is business."  Stalin dismissed Leon Trotsky from his position as people's commissar for war.  Hitler met Joseph Goebbels, who had a doctorate in literature from Heidelberg, and Goebbels advised Hitler, "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."  John Scopes was found guilty of teaching evolution in a Tennessee High School and fined $100 and court costs.  Earl Wise invented the potato chip, and flagpole sitting was the national fad.  High Modernism was losing elevation, but it was still going strong, if these books are any indication.  This will be a course about these books, but it will also be about this year and this period.  It was quite a year.

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