This survey of literature written in the English colonies that became the United States will begin with Native American and colonial texts and will conclude in the mid-nineteenth century. Ranging from autobiography, life-writings, and oral narrative to history, religious writings, poetry, and fiction, the course will emphasize the shaping forces of race, ethnicity, and gender in the development of national literature in the U.S. and will trace the contested meanings of the word "American" itself.
Writers are likely to include John Smith, Anne Bradstreet, Cotton Mather, William Byrd, Phillis Wheatley, Benjamin Franklin, Susanna Rowson, Washington Irving, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Apess, Margaret Fuller, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Harriet E. Wilson. Requirements are likely to include six short papers and a final exam.
Note: This course may be used to satisfy the usual English 200 requirement.