Known for his searing social criticism, John Steinbeck is one of the most popular and influential American writers of the 20th century. His works are read and studied at all levels and have been made into films. And though critics and scholars initially found fault with his enormously popular works, he is now widely recognizes as a master of his craft. This encyclopedia provides an extensive overview of his life and career and is accessible to high school students, undergraduates, and general readers.
Presented are roughly 1200 alphabetically arranged entries by more than 40 expert contributors. These entries cover his works, major characters, family members and contemporaries, influences, and a range of special topics.
Harper Lee's only novel won the Pulitzer Prize and was transformed into a beloved film starring Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch. An American classic that frequently appears in middle school and high school curriculums, the novel has been subjected to criticism for its subject matter and language. Still relevant and meaningful, To Kill a Mockingbird has nonetheless been under-appreciated by many critics. There are few books that address Lee's novel's contribution to the American canon and still fewer that offer insights that can be used by teachers and by students.
These essays suggest that author Harper Lee deserves more credit for skillfully shaping a masterpiece that not only addresses the problems of the 1930s but also helps its readers see the problems and prejudices the world faces today. Intended for high school and undergraduate usage, as well as for teachers planning to use To Kill a Mockingbird in their classrooms, this collection will be a valuable resource for all teachers of American literature.