Revolutions (but not the wars)


History is riddled with changes and upheavals in all sorts of areas, from colonial revolutions to film.  Rise up with us and learn about various revolutions through time in the areas of Literature, Film, Communication Inventions, and Music, thanks to the librarians at the Internet Public Library.


Literary Revolutions

Throughout history the human civilization has seen several literary revolutions that have changed the way we view and disseminate books and ideas.  Come with us on a journey into the literary past with the sources below.

The Renaissance was an extraordinary time period not just for artwork and science, but for literature as well  Gutenberg’s printing press revolutionized the creation of books and made literature available to the masses, not just the privileged elite, which helped accelerate the creation of literature as we know it today.  Read about this revolution on the Renaissance site, highlighted in “Printing and Thinking.”

The Harlem Renaissance
The Harlem Renaissance, 1919-1937, was a period when the African American community came into their own through literature, music, and the arts.  Grow acquainted with the novels, authors, and major figures of the Harlem Renaissance through this research and reference guide.

The Psychedelic ’60s:  Literary Tradition and Social Change
The 1960s changed the way many people viewed the world, and no realm of culture was untouched–including literature.  Famous authors such as Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and William Burroughs paved new literary roads, and books poured out of authors on all kinds of social issues.  Be a hip cat and catch up on all of the novels and writers here at the Psychedelic ’60s website.


Film Revolutions

Since its inception, the technology used to produce films has changed greatly. Along with these advances, the styles, genres, techniques and special effects showcased have also transformed. Throughout the years many revolutions within the film industry have sparked these transformations and allowed them to take place.
This website provides a timeline of cinema’s early years, beginning in 1827 and ending in 1905. Also detailed are the various revolutionary technologies pioneered and developed over the course of film history, which enables audience members to view movies in stunning detail today. The resource allows viewers to learn more about film visionaries and specific cinematic technology as well as explore additional sources.

During Bollywood’s Golden Age, Hindi cinema had a profound effect on the global film industry by being the catalyst for many new movements, including the “coming of age” genre. This website is devoted to Hindi cinema and feature movie reviews, information on new releases and interviews with popular film stars. It also discusses the music used in these movies and has a section dedicated to regional releases.

Animated Films
Conceived in the early 1900’s and still popular today, animation devised by American and Japanese creators is a prominent genre in the film industry. This website details the rise of all types of animation and provides examples of notable films that feature this technique. Divided up into five parts, this resource also mentions well-respected cartoonists and artists.


Communication Invention Revolutions

Today people take for granted the myriad of ways to communicate with others. There are cell phones, email, instant messaging, television and, of course, the Internet. The inventions during the late 1800s are what allowed these current methods to be created. Here are some sources that will allow you to see how the telegraph, telephone and radio created such an impact.

Samuel F. B. Morse Papers at the Library of Congress, 1791-1919
Samuel F. B. Morse took the use of electricity and combined it with the common practice of signally messaging over a long distance with flags. This site, maintained by the Library of Congress, bases its records on the primary sources recorded by Morse throughout his life.

A Memorial to the Bell System
This site is intended to bring together historical facts, exhibits, and telephone enthusiasts. Within each of the menu options further information can be found regarding the history of telephones.

United States Early Radio History
As the radio’s invention was built upon the creation of the telegraph and the telephone, this site’s creators provide information regarding both inventions as well as extensive links to the various uses of radio from its infancy through World War II.

Music Revolutions

The arts, like everything else, seem to experience sudden, revolutionary leaps. The following sites provide information about some of the rebels and their music.

Keeping Score: Revolutions in Music
This PBS series is the Classical version of VH1’s “Behind the Music.” The hosts focus on the biographical and historical context in which famous composer existed. Season 1, Revolutions In Music, highlights several famous composers and their revolutionary music.

Notes from Underground
This site reveals a map of music types using London Underground map imagery. It’s a unique way to visualize various music genres and artists.

British Beat Boom
The British are coming! The British are coming! It may look like this site was designed in the early 1960’s when the “British Invasion” was getting underway, but it’s actually loaded with information about the many bands that landed in America with a new, revolutionary sound.