Pagan Dreiser: Songs from American Mythology
Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press, 2001 - Literary Criticism - 235 pages
Pagan Dreiser: Songs from American Mythology recontextualizes the eight novels of Theodore Dreiser with regard to his pervasive allusions, both in passing and at deep structural levels, in classical Greek myth, epic, and drama. His so-called naturalism, his elusive social criticism, and his unique approaches to sexuality, gender, and religion are often dictated by Dreiser's self-characterized "pagan" outlook, which itself reflected a larger cultural movement of early-twentieth-century America. Dreiser is reconsidered in the company of his modernist contemporaries, such as Eliot and Joyce, who drew heavily on ordered myth systems in order to dramatize the instability of the World War I era.
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