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  • Cited by 1
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
September 2021
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Book description

Chicago occupies a central position in both the geography and literary history of the United States. From its founding in 1833 through to its modern incarnation, the city has served as both a thoroughfare for the nation's goods and a crossroads for its cultural energies. The idea of Chicago as a crossroads of modern America is what guides this literary history, which traces how writers have responded to a rapidly changing urban environment and labored to make sense of its place in - and implications for - the larger whole. In writing that engages with the world's first skyscrapers and elevated railroads, extreme economic and racial inequality, a growing middle class, ethnic and multiethnic neighborhoods, the Great Migration of African Americans, and the city's contemporary incarnation as a cosmopolitan urban center, Chicago has been home to a diverse literature that has both captured and guided the themes of modern America.

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