Division and Diversity in American Literature: Post-Civil War to Present

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date



College of Arts and Sciences



Faculty Sponsor

Tara Penry


In this representation of American literature, we convey the varied contributions of authors from three major literary movements following the Civil War: realism, modernism, and postmodernism were important causal forces behind the growth of American culture. Within these movements are authors: the individual forces of nature, rulebreakers, and liberators that represent our nation’s artistic spirit at its finest. We distribute these three eras as a triptych chronology. Our visual representations describe influential authors and their innovations. We display the breadth of peoples who guided this country’s creative development, and appreciate the impressions of their works upon present and historic American literature. Through rigorous study, we have curated authors who most represent the diversity, bravery, and skill with which American literature has become synonymous. Our project is a collaborative class effort of 22 undergraduate students studying American literature and asking what the canon of the field looks like when students write the story. We are eager to share it with our peers.

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