American Literature and Composition 1
Course Syllabus -- Fall Semester 2003
American Literature I is a required course for graduation in the Denver Public
School system. Because each
student must succeed in the class in order to graduate, the course is
designed to be comprehensive and it is expected that all students will
The Fall semester class covers American Literature from Native
American mythology through the end of the 19th century.
Essays, public documents, folklore, poetry, short stories, novels
and plays are all examined in the context of historical events and human
experience. It is essential that we make the connection between life and
literature, and understand how the writersí environments and
circumstances influenced their work.
In the first 9 weeks Native American mythology, European exploration, Pilgrim experience and Puritanical New England will be explored and the period leading to the American Revolution will be carefully examined. The political events of the time are powerfully represented by the writings of the emerging nationís philosophers and poets, politicians and revolutionaries. In addition, we have the first writings from African-Americans that document their experiences as slaves in the land of Freedom. (Settlement-1780ís)
Creation and spirituality myths (Native American)|
REQUIRED PROJECTS:1) Family History with Genogram (3-4 pages) DUE SEPTEMBER 15th
2) Biography of American Revolutionary (3-4 pages) DUE OCTOBER 6th
Second Marking Period:
In the second nine weeks we discover the emergence of American writers and poets who, with their work, describe and define the unique perspective and ideology of their new country. For the first time, truly American stories show us a country discovering its own voice, and the events and turmoil of the Civil War reveal the darker truths, as well as the noble promise of the nation. Ultimately, writing after the Civil War definitively points American literature in a new direction. (1800-1900)
Essays (Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau)
VOCABULARY: There are 4 vocabulary quizzes per marking period, and each quiz covers 20 words. Quiz dates are always announced.
EXAMS: There will be an exam at the end of each marking period covering the literature studied over the nine weeks. These exams will be announced well in advance, and a review of the material will be conducted before each exam.