Home Books Backgrounds to English Literature Set, 4-Volumes
Backgrounds to English Literature Set, 4-Volumes
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  • Imprint: Facts On File
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Published:03/01/2003
  • Status: In Stock
  • ISBN: 0816051259 • 13-Digit ISBN: 978-0-8160-5125-0
  • List Price: $120.00 • Discount Price: $108.00
Individual Titles
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Post-War Literature, 1945 to the Present
$30.00 Hardcover In Stock Add to Wish List Add to Cart
The Renaissance
$30.00 Hardcover In Stock Add to Wish List Add to Cart
The Romantics
$30.00 Hardcover In Stock Add to Wish List Add to Cart
The Victorians
$30.00 Hardcover In Stock Add to Wish List Add to Cart

Reviews and Awards

"This set will provide introductory background information for high school and undergraduate students as well as the general public interested in English literature."
American Reference Books Annual

"...the content is solid, and the appeal of the images will be a big draw to public library patrons."
LJ Collection Development, starred review

"...effectively illustrates how history and literature are inexorably intertwined...This effective reference for high school reports combines information often found in multiple sources."


The five-volume Backgrounds to English Literature set puts English literature in context by providing the historical, cultural, and social background of each major period. Each volume is a basic introduction to the period: its history, leaders, important laws, social and religious movements, scientific developments, and details of daily life in different regions and classes within Great Britain. This set summarizes the literary genres of each period and discusses representative writers and works.

In The Renaissance readers discover a period that celebrated human potential and achievement and was defined by the Protestant Reformation and a creative burst in drama and poetry by the likes of Shakespeare, Marlowe, and Donne. Looking through The Romantics, they learn about the origins of romanticism, the age of revolution, and the economic, social, and artistic developments reflected in the work of such figures as Blake, Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats, and Byron. The Victorians provides insight into a time of industrial growth, urbanization, and scientific and economic upheaval and the work of Dickens, Tennyson, and Hardy among others. The Modernist Period: 1900-1945 addresses the effect of two World Wars, an economic depression, and the resulting uncertainty, desperation, and cynicism expressed by English writers such as Eliot, Lawrence, Joyce, and Yeats. Post-War Literature: 1945 to the Present explores the impact of decolonization, mass popular culture, women's liberation, and postmodernism on works by Orwell, Beckett, Atwood, Rushdie, and others.

Each volume includes:

  • A timeline of events in science, technology, the arts, literature, and history
  • A glossary of terms related to the period
  • A biographical glossary of major writers
  • Recommended books and Web sites for further research
  • Full-color illustrations of artwork and architecture related to the literature of each period.

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