Lightning Lit: American Lit

American Early-Mid Lit

Two of the key founders and shapers of this country (Benjamin Franklin and Frederick Douglass) give us their stories in autobiographical form while works from other key authors like Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville illustrate how unique literary traditions were developed in this country.  Students work on writing skills like persuasive writing, tone and mood, and conflict.  This course is written from a secular perspective, though we do touch on the religious concepts of sin, penance, and redemption in the discussion of Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter.

American Mid-Late Lit

Many of the works in this course examine key elements of the history and society of our country at this time, including slavery (Harriet Beecher Stowe), the Civil War (Stephen Crane) and the drive to conquer the wilderness (Jack London).  Students will work on writing skills like theme, register, point of view, etc.  Though religious faith and morality are important themes in Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and are touched on in this course, the course as a whole is written from a secular perspective.

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