Ch 18: Literature of the Turn of the Century

About This Chapter

Increase your knowledge of turn-of-the-century literature with this chapter. Use these lessons and quizzes as a comprehensive study guide to help you get the best score you can on a test or homework assignment.

Literature of the Turn of the Century - Chapter Summary

In this chapter, our instructors introduce you to the plays and novels of Oscar Wilde, including The Picture of Dorian Gray. You will learn about George Bernard Shaw's major play and life. The novels of Joseph Conrad and the theme of colonialism in his novel Heart of Darkness will also be discussed.

As you progress through the chapter, you'll review the poetry and life of W.B. Yeats, including his postwar poem The Second Coming A discussion of author E.M. Forster's life and works, including Howard's End and A Passage to India, is also included. Once you have reviewed these lessons, you'll be able to:

  • Discuss the plays and novels of Oscar Wilde
  • Describe the main themes of The Picture of Dorian Gray
  • Name George Bernard Shaw's major play
  • Identify the themes of colonialism in Joseph Conrad's work
  • Understand the poetry of W.B. Yeats
  • Detail the words of E.M Forster and their main themes

Our mobile-friendly lessons and quizzes are created by professional instructors to ensure your learning experience is simple and interesting. Use the printable transcripts that accompany each lesson to study the material offline at any time. If you have questions as you work through the chapter, contact one of our instructors for additional help.

10 Lessons in Chapter 18: Literature of the Turn of the Century
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Introduction to Oscar Wilde: Plays, Novels, and Sexuality

1. Introduction to Oscar Wilde: Plays, Novels, and Sexuality

From ''The Picture of Dorian Gray'' to the ''Importance of Being Earnest'', Oscar Wilde left an indelible mark on literature and theater. In this lesson, you'll learn all about the Victorian author.

The Picture of Dorian Gray: Plot, Characters & Vanity

2. The Picture of Dorian Gray: Plot, Characters & Vanity

The Picture of Dorian Gray is the only novel Oscar Wilde ever published. Personally, I think he was at his best when he stuck to plays (don't get me started on his poetry), but no examination of Wilde's work is complete without this book.

Introduction to George Bernard Shaw: Life and Major Plays

3. Introduction to George Bernard Shaw: Life and Major Plays

George Bernard Shaw is one of the most prolific and important playwrights in the last 150 years. Don't believe us? Watch this video to learn about his social activism, his important contribution to the world of education and, of course, his plays.

Introduction to Joseph Conrad:  Novels and Colonialism

4. Introduction to Joseph Conrad: Novels and Colonialism

Sailor, groundbreaking writer, incurable racist - these are just some of the terms that have been used to describe novelist Joseph Conrad. Watch our lesson for an introduction to this man's life and an overview of his major works!

Conrad's Heart of Darkness: Plot, Characters, and Style

5. Conrad's Heart of Darkness: Plot, Characters, and Style

Joseph Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness' is one of the most read and taught stories in the English language. It also inspired a hugely popular film. Watch our lesson to learn all about this horrifying classic.

Introduction to W.B. Yeats:  Life and Poetry

6. Introduction to W.B. Yeats: Life and Poetry

'Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold.' Watch this video to learn more about the man behind that quote - W.B. Yeats. Study the events, stages and works of his writing career. Also take a look at his personal history, including his ties to Ireland.

Yeats' The Second Coming:  A Poem of Postwar Apocalypse

7. Yeats' The Second Coming: A Poem of Postwar Apocalypse

In this video, we'll discuss Irish poet W.B. Yeats' most famous poem, 'The Second Coming.' Written after the devastation of World War I, it uses a religious metaphor to capture a Europe in chaos and on the brink of change.

Introduction to E.M. Forster:  Overview of Life and Works

8. Introduction to E.M. Forster: Overview of Life and Works

E.M. Forster is one of the most celebrated British novelists of the 20th century. In particular, his depictions of class issues struck a chord with many readers - and continue to do so today. Watch this lesson for an overview of his six key novels!

Howards End: Forster's Novel of Family and Social Class

9. Howards End: Forster's Novel of Family and Social Class

Throughout his career, British author E.M. Forster wrote about class barriers as an impediment to human connection. His most famous exploration of that theme is the 1910 novel 'Howards End.' Learn about that novel's plot, characters and ultimate message here.

A Passage to India:  Forster's Treatment of Colonialism

10. A Passage to India: Forster's Treatment of Colonialism

'A Passage to India' is one of E.M. Forster's most celebrated novels. Watch this lesson to see why this sad story of British colonialism has stuck with audiences for almost a century.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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