For 26 days in the month of April, I’ve attempted to post an interesting topic for each letter of the alphabet in the A to Z Challenge. It’s been a fun change of pace for me and I look forward to the next. Hopefully there will be more in the years to come. Follow this link to nearly 2000 other bloggers and authors for one last chance to get your Zzzz’s. 🙂
The A to Z Challenge – participating blogs
Today’s Calliope’s Writing Tablet post is brought to you by the letter Z for Zeitgeist.
Literally translated from German, Zeitgeist means time spirit. Distill that further and you get the spirit of the age. It describes the trend of the times be it intellectual, cultural, ethical, or political. Some consider the word has layers of meaning beyond its English translation. Words in other languages often do. A curious thing about using the word Zeitgeist, it can only be observed for past events.
There have been several notable ages throughout our recorded history, ages where thought and deed were so encapsulated in that time that when you reference it, it automatically puts you in a certain place in your mind. Wars often mark such pages in the annals of history. To get a better idea of what I mean, consider the Victorian Era for example. When you say Victorian, most people draw from it an image of opulence. As a writer who crafts in layers, I often delve into the spirit of a particular time period. Having a broader idea of the age you’re writing in makes a more believable tale.
To wrap up the A to Z Challenge, I’ll leave you with these Zeitgeists and a few words each brings to my mind. In comments, please share the words that pop into your head. If you don’t know them all, just skip. I’m somewhat of a history buff (aka info nerd). You should see the things in my mind I haven’t talked about! There’s always next year’s A to Z.
- Ancient Greece (Greece and Near East, c. 3300 BC – 31 BC) Philosophy
- Ancient Rome (509 BC – AD 476) Excess
- Middle Ages (Europe, 5th–15th century) Plague
- The Renaissance (Europe, 14th–16th century) Art
- Age of Discovery (Europe, 14th–17th century) Ocean travel
- Elizabethan period (United Kingdom, 1558–1603) William Shakespeare
- The Age of Enlightenment (Europe, 18th century) The ideas that formed the United States of America
- Industrial Revolution (18th and 19th centuries) Factories and child labor
- The Victorian Era (United Kingdom, 1837–1901) Opulence
- Gilded Age (United States, 19th century) American Industrialists
- American Frontier (1867 – 1890) Cowboys
- Belle Époque in France (1871 to World War I 1914.) Joy of the senses
- Gay Nineties Picnics and bicycles
- Progressive Era (United States, 1890s–1920s) Suffragettes
- World War I (1914–1918) “Over There”
- Roaring Twenties (1920–1929) Gangsters and speakeasies
- The Great Depression (1929 – World War II) The Dust Bowl
- World War II (1939–1945) The Greatest Generation and Rationing
- Atomic Age (after 1945) Bikini Atoll
- The Fifties (1950–1959) Rock n Roll
- The Cold War (Soviet Union and United States,1945–1989 or 1991) Bay of Pigs. The toppling of the Berlin Wall
- Vietnam War (1955–1975) Protests
- Space Age (after 1957) Moon walk
- The 1960’s Hippies
- The 1970’s Disco
Thanks for joining me the last few weeks. I hope you’ve found my posts both interesting and contemplative. We really do live in a world of marvels. I’ve had so much fun discussing my A to Z posts with you. To keep conversations going, I’ve launched a Salon Blog called Another Stone Unturned. When I think of Salons, I think of the coffee houses of The Enlightenment where the great ideas of the age were discussed.
Being pressed for time right now with my edits, I’ve put my Gobekli Tepe post there to reanimate the discussion. Let’s talk about it or how about another topic? What have you found on the web? What stone might still be unturned for interested learners? What can you share? I know I”d love to see! Read the details there and let’s start the ball rolling. http://anotherstoneunturned.blogspot.com/
Rose Anderson ~ Love Waits in Unexpected Places
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