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Fall 2017
Sep 20, 2017
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ENGL 402 - Fitzgerald & His Circle
The career of F. Scott Fitzgerald — and the decade of “The Roaring Twenties”— started off with a bang in the spring of 1920;  indeed, some scholars say that Fitzgerald “invented” the ‘Roaring Twenties with his best-selling debut novel, This Side of Paradise.  This Side of Paradise is a college novel based on Fitzgerald’s undergraduate years at Princeton.  In it, and in many of the novels and short stories that followed, Fitzgerald largely defined “The Jazz Age” — a phrase that he himself coined.

This course examines Fitzgerald’s most important works of the 1920s, as well as many of those of his contemporary friends and mentors such as Ernest Hemingway, Ring Lardner, Dorothy Parker, H.L. Mencken, Gertrude Stein, Edmund Wilson, Dashiell Hammett and Zelda Fitzgerald.  The course will also investigate the cultural context of the 1920s—an era marked by Prohibition, The Scopes Trial, The Great Migration, the imposition of immigration quotas, the widespread introduction of the assembly line, the democratization of car ownership, the rise of skyscrapers in American cities, the advent of radio, air travel, and advertising, greater freedom in sexual behavior, and, ultimately, The Great Depression—when the “great national party” came to an abrupt halt.

Among the texts we’ll be reading are:

This Side of Paradise
The Beautiful and Damned
The Great Gatsby
Selected Short Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald
Selected Short Stories of Ring Lardner
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
Selected Short Stories of John O’Hara
The Vintage H.L. Mencken
The Portable Dorothy Parker
Essays and Reviews by Edmund Wilson
The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
Selected Writings of Gertrude Stein
Selected Writings of Zelda Fitzgerald
Everybody Was So Young by Amanda Vaill
Terrible Honesty by Ann Douglas

3.000 Credit hours
3.000 Lecture hours

Levels: MN or MC Graduate, Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Lecture

English Department

Course Attributes:
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