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- Analyze the poems of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
- Explore the writing styles of Herman Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne.
- Study Ralph Waldo Emerson's Self-Reliance essay on transcendentalism.
- Provide an analysis of Henry David Thoreau's Walden.
- Identify the realist and transcendental works of Walt Whitman.
- Read and summarize Uncle Tom's Cabin, and examine the role it played in the American Civil War.
- Look at Mark Twain's early years and learn about his life as a regionalist writer.
- Explore the plot of Willa Cather's My Antonia.
- Check out the biographies and major works of Edith Wharton, Kate Chopin and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
- Describe the plot of Henry James' Daisy Miller.
- Examine the lives and writing styles of Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner.
- Discuss the importance of Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath.
- Summarize Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man and Richard Wright's Black Boy.
- Explore the themes of J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye.
1. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow: Poem Analysis
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was known as a fireside poet because his poems were read by the fire as a means of entertainment. Learn about how he created American history through the use of musical elements, like rhythm and rhyme scheme.
2. Herman Melville: Biography, Works & Style
Like many great people, Herman Melville was misunderstood during his time. Watch this video to find out why the author of the famous novel 'Moby Dick' died almost as a complete unknown.
3. Nathaniel Hawthorne: Biography, Works, and Style
Who was Nathaniel Hawthorne? Well, besides being a brooding guy with a bit of a dark past, he was one of the most famous writers from early America. Learn more about him and his view of the Puritan belief system in this video.
4. Self-Reliance: Ralph Waldo Emerson's Transcendental Essay
This video analyzes Ralph Waldo Emerson's essay 'Self-Reliance' for characteristics of transcendental ideas, including individualism, nonconformity, and intuition.
5. Henry David Thoreau's Walden: Summary and Analysis
Henry David Thoreau was one of the most influential transcendental American writers and Walden was one of the movement's most important works. Let's explore why.
6. Walt Whitman: Transcendental and Realist Poet
Walt Whitman is now considered one of the greatest American poets of all time, but his work was not so well-loved when it first debuted. Find out what made the man and his poems so controversial.
7. Uncle Tom's Cabin and the American Civil War
In this lesson, we will explore the context, characters and plot of one of the country's most influential novels, Harriet Beecher Stowe's 'Uncle Tom's Cabin.' Then, find out how it inched America closer to the Civil War.
8. Mark Twain: Biography, Works, and Style as a Regionalist Writer
In this lesson, we will learn about Mark Twain's life, his most acclaimed writings and his place as a realist and regionalist writer in this country's literary history.
9. Willa Cather's My Antonia: Summary and Analysis
In this lesson, we will examine Willa Cather's most recognizable literary work, 'My Antonia'. We will take a look at the plot of this story while considering the ways in which this modernist novel uses language and setting to reflect character relationships and emotion.
10. Kate Chopin: Biography, Works, and Style
In this lesson, we will learn about Kate Chopin, a Southern regionalist writer. First, we will consider how her life created a framework for stories that reflect early feminist values in a very traditional world, then we will look at her two most famous works, 'The Story of an Hour' and 'The Awakening.'
11. The American in Europe: Henry James' Daisy Miller
In this lesson, we will examine the literary theme of the American abroad in the work of expatriate writer Henry James. Specifically, we will examine James's depiction of character relationships, behavior and social context within his novella Daisy Miller.
12. F. Scott Fitzgerald: Biography and Works
F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote one of the defining American novels: 'The Great Gatsby.' Yet, his personal life was tumultuous and filled with struggles. In this lesson, we'll explore his major works and his life story.
13. Ernest Hemingway: Biography, Works, and Style
American author Ernest Hemingway used the experiences from his rich and colorful life to inform his novels and short stories. Learn about how life and major works.
14. William Faulkner: Biography, Books, and Style
William Faulkner towers above American literature, particularly American literature of the South. In this lesson, we'll explore his life and review his major works and style.
15. John Steinbeck: Grapes of Wrath and Other Works
John Steinbeck is one of the 20th century's most celebrated authors. In this lesson, we'll look at Steinbeck's most famous work, 'The Grapes of Wrath.' We'll also discuss his style and consider his other major works.
16. Ralph Ellison: Invisible Man Summary and Analysis
If people only see you as a part of a race, and not as an individual, are you still a person? In this lesson, we'll analyze Ralph Ellison's important and critically acclaimed novel, 'Invisible Man.'
17. 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.'
18. J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye: Summary and Analysis
J.D. Salinger's novel tells the story of Holden Caulfield, a literary figure you'll either love or hate. Watch this video to find out which camp you fall into!
19. John Proctor: Character Traits & Analysis
Meet John Proctor, the protagonist of Arthur Miller's historical drama 'The Crucible.' This lesson will briefly introduce his character traits while illustrating the transformation that grants him significance as a dynamic character.
20. Anne Tyler: Biography & Books
Welcome to the world of Anne Tyler! Learn about her charming and hypnotic brand and why her quiet, unassuming style is something too special to miss. Read about the various plots of her books, and choose which Anne Tyler novel will be your first.
21. Beloved by Toni Morrison: Summary & Analysis
The 1987 novel, ''Beloved'', won the Pulitzer Prize and led to Toni Morrison winning the Nobel Prize for Literature. Morrison based her novel of the horrors of slavery on a grisly true story. This lesson will cover the summary and analysis of ''Beloved''.
22. Chaim Potok: Biography & Books
Chaim Potok was a rabbi, teacher, and award-winning author. His unique novels explore themes of religion, community, and identity. Read on to learn more about Potok's interesting life and the many novels he wrote.
23. David Mitchell: Biography & Books
English author David Mitchell, writer of books such as ''Cloud Atlas'' and ''The Bone Clocks,'' is a globe-hopping literary sensation. Born in a small town in England, he's lived in several different countries and written many award-winning books. Let's take a look at his life and work.
24. Jodi Picoult: Biography & Books
Jodi Picoult is one of the most lauded current American authors. She has written nearly two dozen novels, several of which have been made into movies. This lesson covers the biography and books of Jodi Picoult.
25. Norman Mailer: Biography, Books & Essays
This lesson details the colorful life and works of Norman Mailer, a literary icon known for his novels, essays and plays as well as his many wives. Learn about his life events, books and essays, then test your knowledge with the quiz!
26. The Adventures of Augie March by Saul Bellow: Summary & Analysis
Saul Bellow's 1953 novel ''The Adventures of Augie March'' is a picaresque story of the coming-of-age of a young man before and during the Great Depression. With its loose, episodic structure, the novel questions the assumptions of most American success stories.
27. The Call of the Wild: Summary, Setting & Characters
''The Call of the Wild'' is the story of survival and change in nature's harshest conditions, told through the story of a sled dog. Read a synopsis of this well-known story, and meet some of Jack London's vivid characters.
28. The Maltese Falcon: Summary, Characters & Analysis
In this lesson, we will review the numerous characters in Dashiell Hammett's crime novel 'The Maltese Falcon' and also consider some common ways that critics have analyzed the story. Then you can test your knowledge with a quiz.
29. The Scarlet Letter: Characters, Symbols & Themes
During this lesson, we will learn about Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel, The Scarlet Letter. After we explore the cast of the novel, we will discuss the novel's main symbols and themes. We will follow up with a short quiz.
30. The Sound and the Fury by Faulkner: Summary & Analysis
In this lesson, we'll examine William Faulkner's novel, 'The Sound and the Fury'. In particular, we'll discuss the novel's unusual narrative techniques, plot, and main themes.
31. Thomas Pynchon: Novels & Concept
Thomas Pynchon is widely regarded by scholars and literary critics as one of the most important American novelists of the second half of the 20th century. Pynchon is famous not only for his complex novels but also his reclusive lifestyle.
32. Wallace Stegner: Biography & Books
You may know Wallace Stegner as a popular American writer, but how much do you know about his personal life and career? In this lesson, you will learn about Stegner's experiences and how they inspired a lifetime of writing.
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