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Modernist Writers in Special Collections

A Guide to Literary Modernism in Special Collections and University Archives.

Welcome to the Special Collections Guide to Modernist Writers in Special Collections

This guide provides a list of materials about and by literary modernists, available in Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland.  Although historians often disagree about when the modernist period began and ended, the general consensus is that it began around 1910 and reached its peak in the 1920s and 1930s.  However, a group referred to as the "late modernists" would continue to write into the 1940s and 1950s.  Modernism was influenced by the changes in science and medicine made by figures such as Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud.  Modernism was also shaped by major world events, particularly the First and Second World Wars.


Characteristics of Modernism include the narrative technique stream of consciousness, unreliable narrators, and a break from the established culture's values.  Modernism also included sub-genres such as Imagism (which placed an emphasis on clearly emphasizing expressions with precise imagery), Surrealism (which attempted to bridge the gap between the reality and imagination), and Dada (which rejected logic and reason).  Modernism also appeared in other mediums such as art and music.

The works presented in this guide are from the Literature and Rare Books collection in Special Collections and University Archives, located in Hornbake Library.  For more information about our holdings contact us!

Related Guides

Search the UMD Catalog for Items in Special Collections

Use the University of Maryland classic catalog to search for titles in the rare book collection by date of publication, author, or keyword. Select Advanced Search and select Marylandia and Rare Books to search for works housed in Special Collections and University Archives.

Contact us with any questions about locating books in Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland.

All rare books can be requested online and viewed in the Maryland Room, located in Hornbake Library at the University of Maryland College Park.