Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Thomas Koenigs

Reader 2

John Peavoy

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© 2015 Amy Cannistraro


The period following World War I can be characterized in literature by the trauma and changes that promoted crises of masculinity. These crises, however, are not discussed between the men that suffer similar feelings of insecurity and anxiety; not approached as a tension in need of resolution. Exploring the narrative voices of Nick, Jake, Darl and Anse in The Great Gatsby, The Sun Also Rises, and As I Lay Dying, this thesis addresses the ways in which this unspoken phenomenon is essential to the modernist male narrative. I propose that, despite the widespread nature of this phenomenon, it is the voice of the individual – the preoccupations of his consciousness – that is the most appropriate point through which to examine these crises of masculinity.