For years, works by F. Scott Fitzgerald and Robert Frost have been staples of high school English classes across America. While The Great Gatsby and “The Road Not Taken” may now be regarded as classics, modernism, the literary movement that Fitzgerald and Frost participated in, was originally considered to be a disruptive force against the literary establishment.
Modernist works by Fitzgerald and Frost, along with Katherine Anne Porter, Djuna Barnes, T.S. Eliot, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, William Faulkner, and Franz Kafka can all be found in the Literary and Rare Books Collections in Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland.
Although historians often disagree about when the modernist period began and ended, the general consensus is that it began around 1910 and reached its peak in the 1920s and 1930s. However, a group referred to as the “late modernists” would continue to write into the 1940s and 1950s. Modernism was influenced by the changes in science and medicine made by figures such as Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud. Modernism was also shaped by major world events, particularly the First and Second World Wars.
If you want to learn more about Fitzgerald, Frost, and other modernists in our collections check out our new subject guide, Modernist Writers in Special Collections!
This guide highlights some of modernist works available in Special Collections and University Archives in Hornbake Library, including materials you can access online.
If you have questions or want to explore more of our modernist holdings, contact us!