Reading a bit of Virginia Spencer Carr’s bio of John Dos Passos for a writing gig. She writes that in 1916, Harvard did not yet have a single course in American literature. Nor did any university except Princeton. That’s a remarkable thing. That truly explains the mind of a Lost Generation writer. Hemingway, Dos Passos, Faulkner et al–they were jumping into the abyss. It’s no surprise that such high marks went to the first Americans to challenge Europe in the realm of English-language literature.