The Chicago Renaissance began in the early 1900s and lasted until approximately 1930. The leading writers of the period—including Theodore Dreiser (Sister Carrie), Sherwood Anderson (Winesburg, Ohio), Edgar Lee Masters (Spoon River Anthology), and Carl Sandburg (Chicago Poems)—focused on the increasing industrialization of American society as well as the loss of traditional rural values and their accompanying romantic ideals. The period also marked the emergence of journalism as a literary medium. The magazines Poetry, founded by Harriet Monroe, and Little Review, founded by Margaret Anderson, emerged at this time, as did the Little Theatre. All provided outlets for new and experimental voices that moved beyond the regionalist style of the late 19th century to explore realism and naturalism. Encyclopedia of the Chicago Literary Renaissance is the only comprehensive reference to this important American literary movement and the writers and other major figures associated with it.
Containing several hundred authoritative entries covering all aspects of the Chicago Renaissance, this A-to-Z encyclopedia provides a detailed look at a group of writers and poets with ties to Chicago whose influence spread throughout the United States and whose visionary works revolutionized American literature in the early part of the 20th century. The book also includes 35 black-and-white illustrations, a chronology, a bibliography, cross-references, and an index.
- All major Chicago-connected writers of the period, as well as other writers who influenced or were influenced by the Chicago Group, including the poet Vachel Lindsay, the novelist Frank Norris, the playwright Ben Hecht, and the social reformers Jane Addams (Twenty Years at Hull House) and Ida B. Wells
- Major works of the period and major characters in these works
- Important places, historical events, and historical figures of the period
- Periodicals that played an important role in publishing or promoting the works associated with the group
- Many terms and other items of interest to students of the Chicago Renaissance.
Black-and-white illustrations. Index. Bibliography. Cross-references. Chronology.
About the Author(s)
Jan Pinkerton holds a Ph.D. in English from Harvard University. She recently retired from Chicago State University, where she taught American and English literature for 30 years. She has published articles in Yale Review, New England Quarterly, Massachusetts Review, American Literature, Journal of Popular Culture, and other scholarly journals. Her other works include a freshman composition anthology, Love, Violence, Capitalism, and Other Topics.
Randolph H. Hudson has taught at the University of Colorado and Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, where he also served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. He holds a Ph.D. in English from Stanford University.