The American Short Story
The American Short traces the development of a specific genre that develops into a decidedly American style. Writers break from their British roots and write with rhetoric and style all their own. The unit develops higher order critical thinking skills by reading and analyzing increasingly difficult literary works. The short stories presented in this unit are specifically selected to expose students to a variety of literary styles and writers from the various literary periods presented this year. Students explore theme, characterization, plot, symbolism, irony, and conflict as well as other aspects of traditional fiction. Students will determine how the author’s background and personal experiences impact their work and discuss elements of setting and the impact of society on a character and his story. Figurative language is also identified. Students will plot the action and development of the stories by identifying the various types of conflict and discussing how those conflicts are resolved. Students will also write a narrative essay.