Cover image for Novels, 1920-1925
Novels, 1920-1925
Dos Passos, John, 1896-1970.
Uniform Title:
Novels. Selections
Publication Information:
New York : Literary Classics of the U.S. : Distributed to the trade in the U.S. by Penguin Putnam, [2003]

Physical Description:
879 pages ; 27 cm.
These novels record the emergence of John Dos Passos as a chronicler of the upheavals of the early 20th century. "In One Man's Initiation:" 1917 an idealistic young American serving as a volunteer ambulance driver in France learns of the fear, uncertainty, and camaraderie of war. "Three Soldiers" engages in a deeper exploration of the impact of World War I upon an increasingly fractured civilization. The novel depicts the experiences of three Americans as they fight in the final battles of the war and then confront a world in which peace offers little respite from the dehumanizing servility and regimentation of militarized life. "Manhattan Transfer" is a kaleidoscopic portrait of New York City in the first two decades of the 20th century that follows the changing fortunes of more than a dozen characters as they strive to make sense out of the chaos of modern turban existence.
One man's initiation, 1917 -- Three soldiers -- Manhattan transfer.
Added Title:
One man's initiation, 1917.

Three soldiers.

Manhattan transfer.
Format :


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FICTION Adult Fiction Central Library

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Before he began the U.S.A. trilogy, John Dos Passos prefigured his groundbreaking epic through three novels that provide a fascinating glimpse into his stunning achievement as an avant-garde prose stylist while they incisively chronicle early twentieth century Europe and America. Manhattan Transfer (1925), a kaleidoscopic portrait of New York City, is universally acknowledged as a modernist masterpiece. This lyrical, exuberantly experimental novel orchestrates the rising and falling fortunes of more than a dozen characters: Wall Street speculators, theatrical celebrities, impoverished immigrants, bootleggers, and anarchist rebels move through a maze of tenements and skyscrapers. The impressionistic One Man's Initiation: 1917 (1920) draws upon Dos Passos' experiences driving ambulances in France to portray the fear, uncertainty, and camaraderie of war. This Library of America edition includes passages censored by the book's original publisher. Three Soldiers (1921), here with the author's own introduction, delves deeply into the spiritual toll of war, dramatizing American servicemen fighting in battle, struggling against dehumanizing military regimentation, and experiencing the chaotic pleasures of Paris.

Along with its companion volumes Travel Books and Other Writings (see opposite page) and U.S.A. (Library of America, 1996), Novels 1920-1925 enriches our understanding of Dos Passos as a writer, thinker, and witness to history.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Dos Passos's second and third outings in the prestigious Library of America series offer a vast resource of his work. The Novels volume includes One Man's Initiation: 1917, Three Soldiers, and Manhattan Transfer. The second volume combines Rosinante to the Road Again, Orient Express, In All Countries, A Pushcart at the Curb, and more. The books also feature notes on the text, a chronology of the author's life, and the other standard extras of the series. Together, a huge dose of Dos. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

One Man's Initiation: 1917p. 1
Three Soldiersp. 87
Manhattan Transferp. 477
Chronologyp. 841
Note on the Textsp. 859
Notesp. 862