Ch 15: MTTC English: Contemporary Literature

About This Chapter

Renew your knowledge of the major figures of contemporary American literature and their works. After watching our video lessons and completing the self-assessment quizzes, you'll be prepared for questions on these writers when you take the MTTC English exam.

MTTC English: Contemporary Literature - Chapter Summary

Let us help you review information on major American novelists, poets and playwrights of the 20th century and their works. Watching these videos lessons and taking the quizzes will help you correctly answer MTTC English exam questions on the following:

  • Characteristics of the contemporary period of American literature
  • Plays and style of Tennessee Williams and Arthur Miller
  • Black Boy by Richard Wright
  • Jack Kerouac and William S. Burroughs
  • The beat generation
  • Edward Albee, the Theatre of the Absurd and The Zoo Story
  • Analysis of Maya Angelou's poetry and her autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

You can watch these lessons, which average about five minutes, on a computer, smartphone or tablet. They're designed and taught by professionals who know what is required for success on the exam. If you have questions after you've finished, you can contact the instructors for additional help.

MTTC English: Contemporary Literature Chapter Objectives

Michigan has made passing the MTTC English exam a requirement for certification to teach the subject. Questions on this exam cover world and North American literature, language development, strategies for reading and writing tips. The exam contains four subareas, and questions on material from this chapter are in the subarea on Literature and Understanding, which totals 26% of the exam's score.

All questions on the MTTC English exam are multiple choice, like the questions on the quizzes that accompany our lessons. These quizzes offer an opportunity to hone your test-taking skills and also assess your knowledge of the subject.

10 Lessons in Chapter 15: MTTC English: Contemporary Literature
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Contemporary Period in American Literature

1. The Contemporary Period in American Literature

Learn about how Contemporary literature developed and understand its fundamental characteristics. Find out how American history and cultural norms really defined and developed the Contemporary period in American literature.

Contemporary American Literature: Authors and Major Works

2. Contemporary American Literature: Authors and Major Works

This lesson helps you decipher pieces of contemporary American literature by looking at famous examples from some of the greatest authors of the time.

Tennessee Williams: Biography, Works, and Style

3. Tennessee Williams: Biography, Works, and Style

This lesson provides insight into the life, work and style of one of the most influential playwrights of our time, Tennessee Williams. His major works include 'A Streetcar Named Desire' and 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.'

Arthur Miller: Biography and Major Plays

4. Arthur Miller: Biography and Major Plays

In this lesson, we will talk about the life of one of America's greatest playwrights, Arthur Miller. We will take a close look at his role in the American political scene of the 1950s and give insight into some of his most influential works.

Richard Wright's Black Boy: Summary and Analysis

5. Richard Wright's Black Boy: Summary and Analysis

After his fiction masterpiece 'Native Son,' Richard Wright wrote a deeply personal and moving autobiography, covering his childhood in the South and his life as an adult in Chicago. In this lesson, we'll explore 'Black Boy.'

The Beat Generation: Characteristics of Beat Poetry

6. The Beat Generation: Characteristics of Beat Poetry

It's a movement that began with a howl, and it had a major impact on both poetry and culture in America. In this lesson, we'll cover the Beat Generation and review the defining characteristics of their style.

Jack Kerouac: On the Road and Other Works

7. Jack Kerouac: On the Road and Other Works

Jack Kerouac didn't just name the Beat Generation, for many people, he defines it. In this lesson, we'll explore 'On the Road, his seminal work, while also reviewing his biography and other notable novels.

William S. Burroughs: Biography, Writings, and Style of a Beat

8. William S. Burroughs: Biography, Writings, and Style of a Beat

Writer, traveler, collaborator, painter, addict, icon...the labels that describe William S. Burroughs never stop. In this lesson, we'll look at the life and writings of the member of the Beat generation who gave us 'Naked Lunch' and much more.

Edward Albee: The Zoo Story & Theatre of the Absurd

9. Edward Albee: The Zoo Story & Theatre of the Absurd

Edward Albee's 'The Zoo Story' may not have a zoo, but there's definitely a story, at least a story of sorts. In this lesson, we'll explore this example of the Theatre of the Absurd.

Maya Angelou: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and Poetry

10. Maya Angelou: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and Poetry

'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' is the autobiography of American poet Maya Angelou. While the story is often difficult to read, it shows how a strong person can overcome difficult obstacles and achieve great things. Learn more about the inspiring life story of one of the country's greatest writers.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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