Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name


Committee Chair

Hassold, Ernest C.

Committee Co-Chair (if applicable)

Kutak, Robert I.


War in literature


The artist, whether he was novelist, poet, painter or essayist, was caught in the maelstrom of violence and destruction that was World War I. Conscription was employed in most nations participating in the War and the artist, with his accurate, discerning eye and his sensitivity, was destined to report the War as he actually saw it unfold before him. A great part of the creative activity these artists engaged in was an analysis and reportage of the years from 1914, to 1918. Before the Armistice had been signed on November 11, 1918, Henri Barbusse had published his indictment of war, Le Feu, in 1917. The novel was awarded the Prix Goncourt for that year. Barbusse's work was the beginning of a stream of war books, poems, dramas and essays that was to come in the nineteen twenties and the nineteen thirties of the Twentieth Century. Practically every participant nation in the War was represented in this tremendous output of' war literature. Such Americans of literary talents as John Dos Passos, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, Paul Green, Robert E. Sherwood, Laurence Stallings, E. E. Cummings and Archibald MacLeish served at the front and later expressed themselves regarding war.