From its roots in the Christian west, American literature gave shape to new ideas even as it breathed life into existing forms such as the Biblical sermon, the ancient quest, and the medieval romance.
This course will take the student from colonial writings to modern fiction, and survey both prose and poetry. The class will be divided between lecture and discussion formats. The student should expect frequent, guided readings and monthly writing assignments that will vary widely, e.g. speech, comparison, poetry, theme, and thesis.
We’ll develop a background in the Puritans and Founders. Then, we will read novels, poetry, and short stories.
Works studied will include the following: The Last of the Mohicans, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short stories, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Red Badge of Courage, and Little Women in the first semester; T.S. Eliot’s poetry, The Great Gatsby, Flannery O’Connor’s short stories, To Kill A Mockingbird, Travels with Charley, and Peace Like a River in the second semester.