LIT 84 CM: The Lyric Voice in Modern American Literature & Film

This course examines currents in American literature and film from World War II to the present. Though the course surveys key trends over this period—especially against the backgrounds of modernism and post-modernism—we will concentrate in particular on the “lyric” impulse in American culture, studying works concerned with ideas of epiphany, meditation, contemplation, transcendence, a general conception of the “poetic” and the role of feeling and the emotions in modern life. With a primary focus on short forms, we will pay special attention to work that confronts the question of how to maintain “lyric” artistic standpoints amid cultural and social developments often inimical to them. Instructor: J. Morrison [Theory or Media History]