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Studies in American Culture (310-0-20)


The Jazz Age: Love and Art in the 1920s


William J Savage
1908 Sheridan Road, OUSA
Office Hours: By appointment

Meeting Info

Harris Hall L06: Tues, Thurs, 3:30PM - 4:50PM

Overview of class

In "Echoes of the Jazz Age," F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote that "it was an age of miracles, it was an age of art, it was an age of excess, and it was an age of satire. " During the cultural crisis of Modernism, when a variety of intellectual revolutions and the unprecedented carnage of the Great War suggested that Western civilization was either a sham or doomed, writers and other artists created new literary forms. Their aesthetic innovation often depicted art and love (or sex) as parallel (or contradictory) ways to create meaning the wasteland of Modernity. In this class, we will read and discuss canonical, lesser-known, and popular texts of ‘20s in order to explore how these revolutionary writers saw love and art in their own time and, maybe, in the future.

Class Materials (Required)

The Waste Land - Eliot
The Great Gatsby - Fitzgerald
The Sun Also Rises - Hemingway
In Our Time - Hemingway
Plum Bun - Fauset
Manhattan Transfer - Dos Passo
Krazy Kat - Herriman
Mickey Mouse - Walt Disney