L384 2132 YOW
Studies in American Culture

2:30p-3:45p TR (30) 3 cr.

Topic: Lost Generations: American Expatriate Writers in Paris

It was Gertrude Stein who coined the term "lost generation" to describe the writers, intellectuals and artists who in the wake of WWI left the U.S. for cosmopolitan Paris, where they freely expressed their disillusionment with and alienation from the U.S. In 1961, James Baldwin referred to a specifically African American expatriate community as "the New Lost Generation." This course will explore a number of questions related to these "lost generations." In what ways, precisely, were they "lost"? How did self-exile constitute a critical response to American culture and politics? How did expatriation influence the imagination of a national identity? What role did the politics of race, class and gender play in various artists' decisions to leave the US?

Authors and artists may include Josephine Baker, James Baldwin, Bricktop, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Chester Himes, William Gardner Smith, Gertrude Stein and Richard Wright.