The content of this course is organized around the theme of conversations in literature with a focus on American Literature. It celebrates, explores, and analyzes the power of language and literature to communicate meaning and experience. Texts are examined from the premise that there is not one ultimate version of reality or truth but rather that literature provides an imaginative, artistic, and technical entrée into the lives and minds of people from all walks of life. Students examine the ideas, experiences, and points of view presented in various texts in relation to each other. Learning to connect the experiences and ideas raised in the literature to the real world is a central part of the course. Through daily discussion and debate, students develop their ability to inquire, question, synthesize, and argue. Explicit study of rhetorical and literary craft prompts students to grow in their appreciation for how language and form influence meaning. Students grow in independent thinking through creative and critical writing with a particular emphasis on argumentative writing and passage analysis. Throughout the year, students work towards an understanding of how language is used to persuade and influence while developing their own facility with language to do the same.
Open to: Sophomores