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 American Literature

Final Project Assignment

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Form to submit final project

Example final projects from other students

Final Project for the class       

For this final journal/project, you are going to come up with an overall theme or idea that you feel represents American culture as seen in its literature. Find a theme that you think has been present throughout the readings. This should be a theme that has changed or been dealt with in various ways by various authors, not something that has stayed the same. Typical themes are things like the role of women, diversity, religion, death, family, etc.

Your job is to come up with a way of presenting this theme, and its changing presentation through the years and these works, in a bulletin board. Come up with a way to represent these ideas graphically, and then incorporate the works into that graphic representation. For example, let's say that I wanted to represent the changing view of the rural lifestyle. I would have a typical farm with slaves out working in the field from Douglass. I would also have a gentleman farmer from Crevecouer. I would probably have a woman running a plow or two youths under a fruit tree for O Pioneers. I would also have a character or two running away, or driving away in a hurry, representing Jeff Norquist or other characters from Staggerford. (By the way, this example is now off limits for you to use).

You should write a short paper that first, explains your theme and how you would present it in the bulletin board. THEN write a description of what you think your bulletin board and its symbolism is saying about the theme and its connection to American Lit. It must use some form of symbolism or representation. You cannot simply post the author's names or pictures and be done. You MUST represent some bigger theme or idea that has been communicated throught these works.

You should use at least 5 of the works in your bulletin board. These works should come from different time periods to show how the theme has been used or seen over time, not just at one time.

Here are sample Final Projects submitted by previous American Lit students. There is a variety here. Some of them are not very good, but I wanted you to see both good and bad. If you get the response, "I could do better with that theme than they did!", then you are well on your way to creating your own final project.

Please note that you are not actually creating the bulletin board or having to draw anything. You are simply describing what you WOULD do.

Use the online form supplied to submit your final project to the instructor when you are ready.