Themes in Modern American Literature


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question 1 of 3

T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land is well-known for its exploration of these themes:

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1. Which narrative device do William Faulkner's novels use to suggest that truth is relative?

2. Which literary figure is known for his famous declaration, ''Make it new''?

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

Although literature of any era is often extremely diverse and multi-faceted, one can often pinpoint a few key themes that seem to define the major literary works of a particular time and place. Included in this quiz and worksheet are questions that will quiz you on the themes found in modern American literature. Answer these questions to see how much you know about these themes and some major works and authors from the Modernist era.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

These questions will test your understanding of:

  • A modern American literary work
  • Notable authors
  • Literary styles
  • The way in which postmodernists portray identity

Skills Practiced

  • Information recall - Answer these questions to see what kinds of facts you can remember about themes found in modern American literature
  • Reading comprehension - Test your understanding of the characteristics and themes of William Faulkner and T.S. Eliot as well as some works from the Modernist era
  • Knowledge application - Apply your knowledge of modern American literature to identify a narrative device that refers to a broken and fragmented reality

Additional Learning

For more information on this subject, read the associated lesson, Themes in Modern American Literature. This lesson will go over themes such as:

  • Alienation
  • Transformation
  • Consumption
  • The relativity of truth