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This course focuses on seeing the world through non-western eyes. Students will read novels by internationally recognized authors from Nigeria, Egypt, and Japan; poetry from many countries; and an autobiography of someone from a non-western country.
Students read in the following order:
- Chinua Achebe (novel: Things Fall Apart)
- African poetry (poems selected from This Same Sky)
- Kazuo Ishiguro (novel: An Artist of the Floating World)
- Poetry of the Far East (poems selected from This Same Sky)
- Naguib Mahfouz (novel: Fountain and Tomb)
- Middle Eastern poetry (poems selected from This Same Sky)
- An autobiography of a national, to be chosen and obtained by the student, from a list of recommendations in the Guide
- Poetry as Life Stories (poems selected from This Same Sky)
Lessons include cultural values and worldviews; historical fiction; symbolism; autobiography; themes; point of view; and imagery, repetition, rhythm, themes, and memories and emotions in poetry. Each unit includes comprehension notes and questions; historical, cultural, and literary background notes; writing exercises; and discussion questions. The Student’s Guide also includes project suggestions; additional reading lists; semester, full-year, geography-coordinated schedules; and a bibliography. The answers to the comprehension questions are in the Teacher’s Guide (see Related items below). Book-length works are sold separately and in a pack with the guides (see Related Items below).
Recommendations: World Literature I is a prerequisite for World Literature II. Students with some cross-cultural experience could use this in grades 9 and 10. This course is especially recommended for juniors and seniors, students interested in literature beyond that of Europe and America, students interested in cultural issues in literature, and students studying modern world history. These should not be viewed as restrictions; this course can profitably be used by high-school students of any grade regardless of which previous Lightning Literature courses they have completed. Generally speaking, this course is more difficult than the two American Literature courses, Speech, and the two nineteenth-century British Literature courses, and about the same as British Christian Literature. Much depends on student interest in the material, however.