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Literary trends and influences in the second half of the 20th century

Summary:

The second half of the 20th century saw diverse literary trends and influences, including postmodernism, which questioned narratives and embraced fragmented structures. There was also a rise in multicultural literature, reflecting varied voices and experiences. Additionally, movements such as magical realism, feminist literature, and postcolonialism significantly shaped literary landscapes, challenging traditional forms and exploring new themes.

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How did the second half of the 20th century affect literature?

I'm not sure if you're talking about American literature during the second half of the last century or world lit; so it might be safer to focus on America Lit. since there are several differences between 1900-1950 American Lit (Modernism) and 1950-present day (Contemporary or Postmodernism).  One of the major influences of the last half of the 20th century on literature is the widespread nature of diversity during Postmodernism.  Whether it be authors from diverse backgrounds (many immigrants found their voice during the second half of the century and many who were once considered minorities published prolifically during the time period) or whether it be diverse genres, the Postmodern era has ushered in a plethora of unique voices and forms.

Another immense influence of the second half of the century upon literature is the emphasis of current events upon writing. Nonfiction has become more popular with the average reader than ever before.  Other literary forms that focus on reality and nonfiction such as "faction" and personal essays have either developed or been reborn.

As far as American themes go, in the second half of the century, writers were generally more optimistic than Modern writers.  Although postmodernists do not have the rose-colored perspective of early Romantics, they generally tend to focus on more positive themes than Modern authors like Steinbeck and Hemingway did.

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How did the second half of the 20th century affect literature?

There will be many answers to this particular question.  I would submit that one of the impacts of the second half of the 20th Century on literature was to increase more voices in the lexicon, within the discourse.  In literature, the growth of the narratives of African- Americans, the voices of Latinos, as well as the understanding of gay/ lesbian/ transgendered experiences, and the greater comprehension of women's issues emerged out of the second half of the 20th century.  Thinkers like Toni Morrison, August Wilson, Lorraine Hansberry, as well as Cesar Chavez, Richard Rodriguez, Anita Desai, Salman Rushdie, Arundhati Roy, or Joyce Carol Oates, Gloria Steinem, in addition to Tony Kushner, Eric Schlosser, or Rachel Carson all sought to increase more voices and newer experiences into the discussion of what it means to be included.  This growth of vocality helps to mark the impact the second half of the 20th century had on literature.   Another reality that had a profound effect on literature was the impact of technology on both literature and its production.  The emergence of books on taps, electronic mediums, and the online bookstore helped to change how books were written, read, and distributed.

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What are the literary trends in the second half of the 20th century?

Another trend is the exploration of the American psyche from writers such as Thomas Pynchon, Don DeLillo, and Philip Roth.

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What are the literary trends in the second half of the 20th century?

Starting with the big boom, the 1950's began to explore science fiction as a booming trend brought in by the space age. Isaac Asimov wrote "I, Robot" back in that time.

A second social trend that began to develop was the recovery from WWII and our status as an American superpower. We had to anchor ourselves in our conservative values to strengthen our self love and patriotism. For this reason we see books like "Life is Worth Living" by Sheen (Bishop Fulton J) and Ayn Rand in "Atlas, Shrugged".

The 60's reflected the tensions developing in society and this is where we find titles such as "Catch 22", "One Flew Over the Coo-koos Nest" and Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird".

Women movements were also mirrored in literature with works from Maya Angelou, Sylvia Plath and Gloria Steinem.

The 70's literature reflected a preocupation with egocentrism and spiritualism. This is the decade where we see the book "Im OK, You're OK" (Thomas Harris), and authors such as John Updike, Kurt Vonnegcut, and Toni Morris offer their most deepest writings.

The 80s were the "American reading years" as new and exciting fiction appeared in the works of John Le Carre. Danielle Steele, Tom Clancy, and Alice Walker

Finally, the 90's were the pioneers of online reading, and bookclubs were the major trend. Multiculturalism, autobiographies, celebriality, and current trends were the most seen books in the 90s'

Hope this helps!

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What are the literary trends in the second half of the 20th century?

Literary trends is a challenging concept.  Usually, "trends" require a period of distance from the particular time frame to properly assess it.  At the same time, "trends" sounds a bit trivial and in its application to literature, I tend to think that gravity might be appropriate.  In terms of some of the ideas and themes that come out of literature in the second half of the century, there would be many.  On one hand, literature that sought to make sense of cultural or national identity emerged from the second half of the 20th Century.  Writers like Milan Kundera sought to analyze what Czech Identity in the wake of the Second World War and Communism.  Salman Rushdie sought to deconstruct the Indian identity post Colonialism and Partition.  In a time period of greater migration and displacement, Carlos Fuentes analyzed much in the way of Latino identity across the world.  Toni Morrison sought to articulate the condition of being of color and being a woman in multiple settings.  Class based identity could be seen in the works of Arthur Miller and August Wilson, while the emerging articulation of what it meant to be gay or lesbian is evident in the works of Tony Kushner and the speeches of Harvey Milk.  The cultural identities of those who might have been relegated to the outside at the start of the century occupied a place at the table of discourse by the end of it.

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