Themes, Identity, Slavery, And The American Dream

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Early American Literature consists of the themes: settlement, war, race, identity, slavery, and the American Dream. As an Early American Literature teacher trying to organize my course for next semester can be difficult. All the themes above are important because they are all a part of history. Authors have expressed one or more of these themes in their writing. This next semester three themes will be emphasized along with the authors that discuss them in their works of literature. This Early American Literature class will deliberate the themes such as settlement, the American Dream and race. Settlement in America has been taught for many years. This next semester we will place emphasis on the works by Christopher Columbus and John Smith.…show more content…
This next semester not only will settlement be a theme but also the American Dream. Settlement led to the American Dream. The American Dream is /was people wanting to come to America and prosper in religious or financial ways. Author Ben Franklin expresses the American Dream in his autobiography. His writing will be important to discuss because the theme of the American Dream places emphasis on his self-made man. Being a self- made man was coming to America and working hard to get what he wanted. He portrays this in his autobiography by explaining how he came from a poor family but still made something of himself. He went from basically rags to riches. The American Dream is a theme that has been expressed for years and will continue for years to…show more content…
Race has been around since settlement. Different races have varying accents and ways of living their everyday life. Some races have and are more respected then others. Indian and the white man are two races that have been around for years. The white man has always been the more respected race than the Indian. The white men viewed the Indians as lacking more knowledge then them because there speaking and ways of life were different from theirs. When in actuality the Indians were very intellectual. This course will show how they taught the white men to survive. Samson Occom is an author we will study because he expresses the theme of race in his writings. He talks about his personal experiences of being an Indian teacher and receiving less respect than a white teacher would. He felt as though he has to prove more because of it. Race is something that has not disappeared. When filling out paperwork people are required to mark their race. There are still race wars; meaning one race feels inferior to the other. When studying the theme of race the students will realize how long race has been around and that it still shows up today. Throughout history much has changed. Being an Early American Lit teacher it excites me to teach the students next semester about how we got where we did today. Although students have read in history books about the coming to America etc. reading Columbus, Franklin, and Occum will require
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