Art and bread [electronic resource] : Mike Gold, proletarian art, and the rhetoric of American communism /Show full item record
|Title||Art and bread [electronic resource] : Mike Gold, proletarian art, and the rhetoric of American communism /|
|Author||Sagerson, Erin Jean|
|Description||Title from dissertation title page (viewed June 22, 2009).
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Texas Christian University, 2009.
Department of English; advisor, Ann George.
Includes bibliographical references.
Text (electronic thesis) in PDF.
An important literary movement took place in 1920s and 1930s America, initiated by author, editor, and critic, Mike Gold; however, both the movement and the man have been marginalized or even dismissed due to their entanglements with political communism. This study is an effort to recover Mike Gold and demonstrate his successes and the successes of proletarian art. Due to changing historical and political contexts, proletarian literature, an art form closely associated with Communism, became the target of attacks by a group of anti-Stalinist literary critics in the mid to late 1930s. This anti-Stalinist aesthetic became the lens through which both Mike Gold and proletarian literature was viewed for decades. Criticism of Gold and proletarian literature intensified after World War II and the onset of the Cold War, particularly after the beginning of the McCarthy Communist witch hunts of the 1950s. Gold's proletarian art was seen by mainstream critics as communist propaganda with no inherent literary or social value. Recovery efforts have been underway since the 1960s for proletarian literature; Gold, however, has not received the attention and credit he deserves for initiating and sustaining a unique, largely-successful literary movement meant, quite consciously, to function rhetorically. This project attempts to fill in the gap in Gold scholarship, to contextualize Gold's writings by considering the very specific exigencies to which Gold was responding and by considering Gold's ultimate rhetorical goals. Ultimately, the study demonstrates that Gold quite deftly navigated the obstacles he encountered and succeeded in "sustaining the impulse of radical literature" in the United States throughout the 1930s (Folsom 14).
|Subject||Gold, Michael, 1894-1967.
American literature 20th century History and criticism.
Proletariat in literature.
Politics and literature 20th century History and criticism.
Communism and literature United States.
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- Theses and Dissertations