American Literature

Grades 10-12+1High school students may be awarded 1 Literature credit upon completion of this course.

  merica has been called “the land of the free,” but debates continue to rage in the public sphere about what freedom and American identity truly mean. American writers, poets, and thinkers have been offering their own commentary on the subject since the Founding of the United States, and it is vital for young Americans — and anyone interested in the future of America — to enter into this historical dialogue about the nature of liberty and the identity of our nation. In this course, we will focus specifically on the development of our nation’s literary and cultural identity.

The course has three main components: reading, discussion, and writing. We will read some of the greatest novels, short stories, and poems from the American literary canon. We will engage in lively, active discussions of the reading every week. We will write three essays, one of them a research essay using MLA style. Grammar is studied through in-depth analysis of selected complex sentences from the assigned texts. The course also includes writing instruction through extensive feedback provided on rough drafts of the 3 persuasive essays and carefully constructed imitation exercises based on passages from the course texts. The course also introduces many literary terms and stylistic devices that are important to American literature and college-level literature classes. Both semesters will end with a short exam.

Registration in Advanced Grammar is recommended for students who are prepared for the literature and writing involved in the course but would like extra instruction in English grammar.

High school students may be awarded 1 Literature credit upon completion of this course.

Prerequisites: High School Lit & Comp and/or British Literature, or permission of instructor

"Mr. Robles is one of the best teachers I’ve ever had! He does a really great job of getting his students involved in the class, and we have some amazing discussions! He’s very knowledgeable and I’ve learned a lot so far in the year!"
- Toby S., Wyoming