posted on Dec, 25 2014 @ 05:53 AM
I live in the UK. I have a great respect for world literature. I do tend to admire classical literature for its quality, timelessness, depth and
ability to capture the times the author was living in.
The U.S has an impressive literary history. Still a young country, the U.S really began a revolution in English literature. I don't know how many
people know it, but T.S Eliot was born in America. He established himself in the classical literary culture of Britain and Europe. He ranks alongside
Shelley, Wordsworth, Coleridge and all the other classic poets. I would argue that he is perhaps the last of the great poets in the English language
and I see his work as embodying the end of our classical age. I do not think Britain will produce the likes of such again, but that is another
Thanks to education the world of literature has become so diverse. The U.S writers were the beginning of this and heralded a new age of literature. I
think Jack Kerouac is very underestimated as a writer and his influence on literature is equally as underestimated. I have gained so much feeling for
this time in U.S history from reading him and I believe he really had his thumb on the very pulse of this most creative and important period of post
WW2 America.Toffee nosed critics might accuse him of being immature in subject matter and the lifestyles he was describing, but I would argue Rimbaud,
Baudelaire and Shelley were equally so. His prose style is incredibly unique and revolutionary. Nobody had ever written like that before. I think his
influence on literature generally has been huge and immeasurable. His encouragement of experimentation has made literature blossom and diversify.
Obviously I could write a whole PHD about this writer, but I am just trying to communicate a sense of his importance in literature. If there is still
any point in using the word classic to describe modern literature then Jack Kerouac is an American classic.
The other literary figure I would like to mention here is Woody Guthrie. Now Woody was a lot more than a musician. His lyrics read like poetry. Again,
here was a man with his thumb on the pulse of U.S culture. Like Kerouac he had travelled the length and breadth of the U.S and knew all the country so
intimately. His songs about the Dust Bowl, racism, refugees and oppression are so intricately crafted. He can tell you as much about thirties U.S as
Charles Dickens can tell you about Victorian Britain.
As an outsider looking in at U.S culture these two shine brightest of all for the quality of their narratives and the intensity of their description
of the time they lived through. Be very proud of these your countrymen.
edit on 25-12-2014 by lonesomerimbaud because: spelling.