E. E. Cummings: The Enormous Room (2016 words)

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The Enormous Room was written in the fall of 1920 and published by Boni and Liveright in New York in 1922. It is the firsthand account of Cummings’ incarceration in a French military detention centre during World War I. Loosely modelled around John Bunyan’s allegorical narrative The Pilgrim’s Progress, Cummings’ text presents the story of his arrest, imprisonment and release as a journey towards perception. Through a mixture of reportage, poetic prose, interjections in French and line drawings, Cummings creates a series of studies of his captors and fellow inmates, revealing his contempt for cruelty and authority, and his irrepressible delight in the variety of human nature.

When America formally …

Hutchison, Hazel McNair. "The Enormous Room". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 09 March 2007
[https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=955, accessed 19 January 2018.]

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