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Topic 31: American literature I (1600-1900)

  1. The colonial period: Anne Bradstreet, Edward Taylor, John Winthrop, Cotton Mather, Jonathan Edwards
  2. Required reading

    Anne Bradstreet: "To My Dear and Loving Husband"; "Contemplations"; "The Author to Her Book"; "Here Follows Some Verses Upon the Burning of Our Home"; "To My Dear Children"; Edward Taylor: "Huswifery"; "Upon a Wasp, Chilled with Cold"; From the Journal of John Winthrop (Norton Anthology, pp. 226-234); Cotton Mather: From The Wonders of the Invisible World (Norton Anthology, pp. 374-379); Jonathan Edwards: "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God"; [The Beauty of the World] (Norton Anthology, pp. 485-487); from "Images or Shadows of Divine Things" (Norton Anthology, pp. 487-491)

  3. The new republic: Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, J. Hector St. John de Crèvecoeur
  4. Required reading

    Franklin: "The Way to Wealth" (Norton Anthology, pp. 493-499), The Autobiography, Part II. (Norton Anthology, pp. 569-585).; Jefferson: form The Autobiography of Thomas Jefferson: "The Declaration of Independence" (Norton Anthology, pp. 714-719). Cr?vecoeur: Letters from an American Farmer, from Letter III, "What Is an American?" ; (Norton Anthology, pp. 641-650).

  5. The new literature of the new republic: Irving and Cooper
  6. Required reading

    Washington Irving: "Rip Van Winkle"; "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"; James Fennimore Cooper: The Last of the Mohicans

  7. Transcendentalism: Emerson, Thoreau, Fuller
  8. Required reading

    Ralph Waldo Emerson: "Brahma"; "Each and All"; "The Rhodora"; "The American Scholar"; "Self-Reliance"; "Nature"; Henry David Thoreau: Walden, or Life in the Woods; "Resistance to Civil Government"; Margaret Fuller: "The Great Law-Suit. MAN versus MEN. WOMAN versus WOMEN".

  9. The power of blackness: Nathaniel Hawthorne
  10. Required reading

    Nathaniel Hawthorne "Young Goodman Brown"; "Rappaccini's Daughter"; "The Minister's Black Veil"; "My Kinsman, Major Molineux"; "Wakefield"; The Scarlet Letter

  11. Supernal beauty versus Subterranean horror: E. A. Poe
  12. Required reading

    Edgar Allan Poe: "The Black Cat"; "The Murders in the Rue Morgue"; "The Fall of the House of Usher", "Ligeia"; "The Pit and the Pendulum", "The Tell-Tale Heart"; "The Imp of the Perverse"; "The Purloined Letter"; "The Raven"; "The Bells"; "Annabel Lee"; "Israfel"; "Twice-Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne: a Review" and "The Philosophy of Composition".

  13. Hunting the heartless void: Herman Melville
  14. Required reading

    Herman Melville: Moby Dick, Chapter XLII, "The Whiteness of the Whale"; "Bartleby the Scrivener"; Billy Budd, Sailor

  15. Dressing the Wounds of America: Walt Whitman
  16. Required reading

    Walt Whitman: "Song of Myself" (1-21, 24, 33, 40, 41, 51, 52); "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking"; "To a Locomotive in Winter"; "Preface to the 1855 Edition of Leaves of Grass"

  17. Dwelling in Possibility: Emily Dickinson
  18. Required reading

    Emily Dickinson: Poems numbered 241 ("I like a look of Agony"), 249 ("Wild Nights"), 695 ("As if the sea should part"), 712 ("Because I could not stop for Death"), 754 ("My life had stood -- a loaded Gun"), 1539 ("Now I lay thee down to sleep"), 1732 ("My life closed twice"), 1755 ("To make a prairie") + 5 poems of your own choice!; "Letters to Thomas Wentworth Higginson" (Norton Anthology, pp. 2526-2529).

  19. Humour and unhappiness in the works of Mark Twain
  20. Required reading

    Mark Twain: "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County"; "The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg"; The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

  21. American naturalism: Stephen Crane and Jack London
  22. Required reading

    Stephen Crane: The Red Badge of Courage; "The Blue Hotel"; "The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky"; Jack London: The Call of the Wild

  23. The complex fate of being American. Henry James
  24. Required reading

    Henry James: "The Beast in the Jungle"; Daisy Miller; The Turn of the Screw; "The Art of Fiction".


last edited on Sat May 31 13:07:55 CEST 2003, by