Hans-Peter Wagner
A Survey of American Literature (Vol. 2, Coursebook for Students)
1900-2000


Intended for students who have passed an introduction to literature, this coursebook offers a survey of twentieth-century American literature. Geared to the actual needs of students in a modular literature course, the book provides practical, "hands-on", material for the sessions in one semester. Covering poetry, prose fiction and drama, it deals with texts by major canonical writers from Modernism to the postmodern period. Students using the book will

- read and prepare literary texts for discussion in class,
- learn to handle critical literature by themselves or in groups,
- prepare presentations and handouts ,
- write short papers or term papers,
- learn about the periods of American literature,
- learn to analyse texts in terms of genre and cultural setting,
- deepen their knowledge of literary theory.

The structure of the book indicates the fact that it is meant for daily, practical, use in class: Part A contains the entire course material, including the syllabus, concrete suggestions for dealing with the texts in the individual sessions, short and essential lists of critical literature and a list of topics for papers; Part B offers further bibliographical help, such as critical literature and academic websites to be used for papers; Part C (three modular exams) provides opportunities for students to test their knowledge; and the final Part D consists of a glossary of literary terms, with sections on rhetorical figures and key terms for the analysis of poetry, prose and drama. At the end, a brief survey of the generally accepted periods of British literature rounds off the coursebook. A remarkable feature of the book is its combination of practical learning/teaching and literary theory.

Contents (PDF)


ISBN 978-3-86821-698-1, 130 S., kt., 17,50 (2017)

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