Literature An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing, MLA Update Edition

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  • Edition: 13th
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2016-09-25
  • Publisher: Pearson
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For introductory courses in Literature. 
This version of Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing has been updated the reflect the 8th edition of the MLA Handbook (April 2016)*

Cultivate a Love of Literature…

X.J. Kennedy & Dana Gioia developed Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing, 13/e with two major goals in mind: to introduce college students to the appreciation and experience of literature in its major forms and to develop the student’s ability to think critically and communicate effectively through writing.  The book is built on the assumption that great literature can enrich and enlarge the lives it touches. Both editors, literary writers themselves, believe that textbooks should be not only informative and accurate but also lively, accessible, and engaging. 

* The 8th edition introduces sweeping changes to the philosophy and details of MLA works cited entries. Responding to the “increasing mobility of texts,” MLA now encourages writers to focus on the process of crafting the citation, beginning with the same questions for any source. These changes, then, align with current best practices in the teaching of writing which privilege inquiry and critical thinking over rote recall and rule-following.


Table of Contents

A Conversation with Amy Tan


1: Reading a Story
The Art of Fiction
Types of Short Fiction
W. Somerset Maugham, The Appointment in Samarra
Aesop, The Fox and the Grapes
Bidpai, The Camel and His Friends
Chuang Tzu, Independence
Jakob and Wilhelm Grimm, Godfather Death
The Short Story
John Updike, A & P
Writing Effectively: John Updike


2: Point of View
Identifying Point of View
Types of Narrators
Stream of Consciousness
ZZ Packer , Brownies
Eudora Welty, A Worn Path
James Baldwin, Sonny’s Blues
Writing Effectively: James Baldwin
THINKING about Point of View


3: Character
Types of Characters
Katherine Anne Porter, The Jilting of Granny Weatherall
Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown
Katherine Mansfield, Miss Brill
Raymond Carver, Cathedral
Writing Effectively: Raymond Carver
THINKING about Character


4: Setting
Elements of Setting
Historical Fiction
Kate Chopin, The Storm
Jack London, To Build a Fire
Ray Bradbury , The Sound of Thunder
Amy Tan, A Pair of Tickets
Writing Effectively: Amy Tan
THINKING about Setting


5. Tone and Style
Ernest Hemingway, A Clean, Well-Lighted Place
O. Henry, The Gift of the Magi
Anne Tyler, Teenage Wasteland
Writing Effectively: Ernest Hemingway
THINKING about Tone and Style


6. Theme
Plot vs. Theme
Theme as Unifying Device
Finding the Theme
Stephen Crane, The Open Boat
Alice Munro, How I Met My Husband
Luke 15:11—32, The Parable of the Prodigal Son
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Harrison Bergeron
Writing Effectively: Kurt Vonnegut
THINKING about Theme


7. Symbol
Recognizing Symbols
John Steinbeck, The Chrysanthemums
John Cheever , The Swimmer
Ursula K. Le Guin, The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
Shirley Jackson, The Lottery
Writing effectively: Shirley Jackson
THINKING about Symbols


8. Reading Long Stories and Novels
Origins of the Novel
Novelistic Methods
Reading Novels
Leo Tolstoy, The Death of Ivan Ilych
Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis
Writing Effectively: Franz Kafka
THINKING about Long Stories and Novels


9. Latin American Fiction
“El Boom”
Magic Realism
After the Boom
Jorge Luis Borges, The Gospel According to Mark
Gabriel García Márquez, A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings
Isabel Allende , The Judge’s Wife
Inés Arredondo, The Shunammite
Writing Effectively: Marquez


10. Poe and O'Connor Casebooks
Edgar Allen Poe, The Tell-Tale Heart
Edgar Allen Poe, The Cask of Amontillado
Edgar Allen Poe,The Fall of the House of Usher
Edgar Allan Poe on Writing
Critics on Edgar Allan Poe

Flannery O'Connor, A Good Man Is Hard to Find
Flannery O'Connor, Revelation
Flannery O'Connor, Parker’s Back
Flannery O’Connor on Writing

Critics on Flannery O'Connor


11. Critical Casebook: Two Stories in Depth
Charlotte Perkins Gilman The Yellow Wallpaper
Charlotte Perkins Gilman on Writing
Critics on "The Yellow Wallpaper"

Alice Walker, Everyday Use
Alice Walker, On Writing

Critics on "Everyday Use"


12. Stories for Further Reading
Chinua Achebe, Dead Men’s Path
Sherwood Anderson, Hands
Margaret Atwood, Happy Endings
Ambrose Bierce, An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
T. Coraghessan Boyle, Greasy Lake
Willa Cather, Paul’s Case
Anton Chekov, An Upheaval
Anton Chekov, Misery
Kate Chopin, The Story of an Hour
Kate Chopin, Desiree's Baby
Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street
Joseph Conrad, The Secret Sharer
Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Speckled Band
Ralph Ellison, Battle Royal
Gustav Flaubert, A Simple Heart
Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Unnatural Mother
Susan Glaspell, A Jury of Her Peers
Nikolai Gogol, The Overcoat
Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Birthmark
Zora Neale Hurston, Sweat
James Joyce, Araby
James Joyce, Eveline
James Joyce, The Dead
Franz Kafka, Before the Law
Jamaica Kincaid, Girl
Jhumpa Lahiri, Interpreter of Maladies
D. H. Lawrence, The Rocking-Horse Winner
D. H. Lawrence, Odour of Chrysanthemums
David Leavitt, A Place I’ve Never Been
Naguib Mahfouz, The Lawsuit
Katherine Mansfield, The Garden Party
Bobbie Ann Mason, Shiloh
Guy de Maupassant, Mother Savage
Herman Melville, Bartleby the Scrivener
Joyce Carol Oates, Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?
Tim O’Brien, The Things They Carried
Daniel Orozco , Orientation
Robert Louise Stevenson, The Bottle Imp
Edith Wharton, The Other Two
Oscar Wilde, The Happy Prince
Tobias Wolff, The Rich Brother
Virginia Woolf, A Haunted House


A Conversation with Kay Ray


13. Reading a Poem
Poetry or Verse
Reading a Poem
William Butler Yeats, The Lake Isle of Innisfree
Lyric Poetry
Robert Hayden, Those Winter Sundays
Adrienne Rich, Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers
Narrative Poetry
Anonymous, Sir Patrick Spence
Robert Frost, “Out, Out–”
Dramatic Poetry
Robert Browning, My Last Duchess
Didactic Poetry
Writing Effectively: Adrienne Rich
THINKING about Paraphrase
William Stafford, Ask Me


14. Listening to a Voice
Theodore Roethke, My Papa’s Waltz
Countee Cullen, For a Lady I Know
Anne Bradstreet, The Author to Her Book
Walt Whitman, To a Locomotive in Winter
Emily Dickinson, I like to see it lap the Miles
Benjamin Alire Saenz, To the Desert
Gwendolyn Brooks , Speech to the Young. Speech to the Progress-Toward
Weldon Kees, For My Daughter
The Person in the Poem
Natasha Trethewey, White Lies
Edwin Arlington Robinson, Luke Havergal
Ted Hughes, Hawk Roosting
Anonymous, Dog Haiku
William Wordsworth, I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
Dorothy Wordsworth, Journal Entry
James Stephens, A Glass of Beer
Anne Sexton, Her Kind
William Carlos Williams, The Red Wheelbarrow
Robert Creeley, Oh No
W. H. Auden, The Unknown Citizen
Sharon Olds, Rites of Passage
Julie Sheehan, Hate Poem
Sarah N. Cleghorn, The Golf Links
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Second Fig
Thomas Hardy, The Workbox
William Blake, The Chimney Sweeper
William Jay Smith, American Primitive
David Lehman , Rejection Slip
William Stafford, At the Un-National Monument Along the Canadian Border

Richard Lovelace, To Lucasta

Wilfred Owen, Dulce et Decorum Est

Writing Effectively: Wilfred Owen



15. Words

Literal Meaning: What a Poem Says First
William Carlos Williams, This Is Just to Say
Marianne Moore, Silence
Robert Graves, Down, Wanton, Down!
John Donne, Batter my heart, three-personed God, for You
The Value of a Dictionary
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Aftermath
Kay Ryan, Mockingbird
J. V. Cunningham, Friend, on this scaffold Thomas More lies dead
Samuel Menashe, Bread
Carl Sandburg, Grass
Word Choice and Word Order
Robert Herrick, Upon Julia’s Clothes
Kay Ryan, Blandeur
Thomas Hardy, The Ruined Maid
Richard Eberhart, The Fury of Aerial Bombardment
Wendy Cope, Lonely Hearts
E. E. Cummings, anyone lived in a pretty how town
Billy Collins, The Names
Christian Wiman , When the Time’s Toxin
Anonymous, Carnation Milk
Gina Valdés, English con Salsa
Lewis Carroll, Jabberwocky
Writing Effectively: Lewis Carroll
THINKING About Diction


16. Saying and Suggesting
Denotation and Connotation
John Masefield, Cargoes
William Blake, London
Wallace Stevens, Disillusionment of Ten O’Clock
Gwendolyn Brooks, The Bean Eaters
Timothy Steele, Epitaph
E. E. Cummings, next to of course god america i
Robert Frost, Fire and Ice
Diane Thiel , The Minefield
H.D., Storm
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Tears, Idle Tears
Richard Wilbur, Love Calls Us to the Things of This World
Writing Effectively: Richard Wilbur
THINKING About Denotation and Connotation


17. Imagery
Ezra Pound, In a Station of the Metro
Taniguchi Buson, The piercing chill I feel
T. S. Eliot, The winter evening settles down
Theodore Roethke, Root Cellar
Elizabeth Bishop, The Fish
Charles Simic, Fork
Emily Dickinson, A Route of Evanescence
Jean Toomer, Reapers
Gerard Manley Hopkins, Pied Beauty
About Haiku
Arakida Moritake, The falling flower
Matsuo Basho, Heat-lightning streak
Matsuo Basho, In the old stone pool
Taniguchi Buson, On the one-ton temple bell
Taniguchi Buson, Moonrise on mudflats
Kobayashi Issa, only one guy
Kobayashi Issa, Cricket
Haiku from Japanese Internment Camps
Suiko Matsushita, Rain shower from mountain
Suiko Matsushita, Cosmos in bloom
Hakuro Wada, Even the croaking of frogs
Neiji Ozawa, The war–this year
Contemporary Haiku
Etheridge Knight, Making jazz swing in
Gary Snyder, After weeks of watching the roof leak
Penny Harter, broken bowl
Jennifer Brutschy, Born Again
Adelle Foley, Learning to Shave
Garry Gay, Hole in the ozone
John Keats, Bright star! would I were steadfast as thou art
Walt Whitman, The Runner
H.D. , Oread
William Carlos Williams, El Hombre
Robert Bly, Driving to Town Late to Mail a Letter
Billy Collins, Embrace
Chana Bloch , Tired Sex
Gary Snyder , Mid-August at Sourdough Mountain
Kevin Prufer, Pause, Pause
Stevie Smith, Not Waving but Drowning
Writing Effectively: Ezra Pound
THINKING About Imagery


18. Figures of Speech
Why Speak Figuratively?
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The Eagle
William Shakespeare, Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Howard Moss, Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day?
Metaphor and Simile
Emily Dickinson, My Life had stood — a Loaded Gun
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Flower in the Crannied Wall
William Blake, To see a world in a grain of sand
Sylvia Plath, Metaphors
N. Scott Momaday, Simile
Emily Dickinson, It dropped so low — in my Regard
Jill Alexander Essbaum, The Heart
Craig Raine, A Martian Sends a Postcard Home
Other Figures of Speech
James Stephens, The Wind
Robinson Jeffers, Hands
Margaret Atwood, You fit into me
George Herbert, The Pulley
Dana Gioia, Money
Carl Sandburg, Fog
Charles Simic, My Shoes
Robert Frost, The Silken Tent
Jane Kenyon, The Suitor
Robert Frost, The Secret Sits
A. R. Ammons, Coward
Kay Ryan, Turtle
Emily Brontë, Love and Friendship
April Lindner, Low Tide
Robert Burns, Oh, my love is like a red, red rose
Writing Effectively: Robert Frost
THINKING About Metaphors


19. Song
Singing and Saying
Ben Jonson, To Celia
James Weldon Johnson, Sence You Went Away
William Shakespeare, Fear no more the heat o’ the sun
Edwin Arlington Robinson, Richard Cory
Paul Simon, Richard Cory
Anonymous, Bonny Barbara Allan
Dudley Randall, Ballad of Birmingham
Bessie Smith with Clarence Williams, Jailhouse Blues
W. H. Auden, Funeral Blues
Kevin Young , Late Blues
Bob Dylan, The Times They Are a-Changin’
Aimee Mann, Deathly
Writing Effectively: Bob Dylan
THINKING About Poetry and Song


20. Sound
Sound as Meaning
Alexander Pope, True Ease in Writing comes from Art, not Chance
William Butler Yeats, Who Goes with Fergus?
John Updike, Recital
William Wordsworth, A Slumber Did My Spirit Seal
Aphra Behn, When maidens are young
Alliteration and Assonance
A. E. Housman, Eight O’Clock
James Joyce, All day I hear
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The splendor falls on castle walls
William Cole, On my boat on Lake Cayuga
Hilaire Belloc, The Hippopotamus
Bob Kaufman , No More Jazz at Alcatraz
William Butler Yeats, Leda and the Swan
Gerard Manley Hopkins, God’s Grandeur
Robert Frost, Desert Places
Reading and Hearing Poems Aloud
Michael Stillman, In Memoriam John Coltrane
William Shakespeare , Hark, hark, the lark
Kevin Young , Doo Wop
T. S. Eliot, Virginia
Writing Effectively: T. S. Eliot
THINKING About a Poem’s Sound


21. Rhythm
Stresses and Pauses
Gwendolyn Brooks, We Real Cool
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Break, Break, Break
Ben Jonson, Slow, slow, fresh fount, keep time with my salt tears
Dorothy Parker, Résumé
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Counting-out Rhyme
Edith Sitwell , Mariner Man
A. E. Housman, When I was one-and-twenty
William Carlos Williams, Smell!
Walt Whitman, Beat! Beat! Drums!
David Mason, Song of the Powers
Langston Hughes, Dream Boogie
Writing Effectively: Gwendolyn Brooks
THINKING About Rhythm


22. Closed Form
Formal Patterns
John Keats, This living hand, now warm and capable
Robert Graves, Counting the Beats
John Donne, Song (“Go and catch a falling star”)
Phillis Levin, Brief Bio
The Sonnet
William Shakespeare, Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Michael Drayton, Since there’s no help, come let us kiss and part
Edna St. Vincent Millay, What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why
Robert Frost, Acquainted with the Night
Kim Addonizio, First Poem for You
Mark Jarman, Unholy Sonnet: After the Praying
A. E. Stallings, Sine Qua Non
Amit Majmudar, Rites to Allay the Dead
R. S. Gwynn, Shakespearean Sonnet
The Epigram
Alexander Pope, Epigram Engraved on the Collar of a Dog
Sir John Harrington, Of Treason
William Blake , To H–
Langston Hughes, Two Somewhat Different Epigrams
Dorothy Parker , The Actress
J. V. Cunningham, This Humanist
John Frederick Nims, Contemplation
Anonymous, Epitaph of a dentist
Hilaire Belloc, Fatigue
Wendy Cope, Variation on Belloc’s “Fatigue”
Lawrence Bridges, Two Poetweets
Robert Pinsky , Low Pay Piecework
Other Forms
Dylan Thomas, Do not go gentle into that good night
Robert Bridges, Triolet
Elizabeth Bishop, Sestina
Writing Effectively: A. E. Stallings
THINKING About a Sonnet


23. Open Form
Denise Levertov, Ancient Stairway
Free Verse
E. E. Cummings, Buffalo Bill ’s
W. S. Merwin, For the Anniversary of My Death
William Carlos Williams, The Dance
Stephen Crane, The Wayfarer
Walt Whitman, Cavalry Crossing a Ford
Ezra Pound, The Garden
Wallace Stevens, Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird
Prose Poetry
Charles Simic, The Magic Study of Happiness
Joy Harjo, Mourning Song
Visual Poetry
George Herbert, Easter Wings
John Hollander, Swan and Shadow
Concrete Poetry
Richard Kostelanetz, Ramón Gómez de la Serna, Simultaneous Translations
Dorthi Charles, Concrete Cat
E. E. Cummings, in Just-
Francisco X. Alarcón, Frontera / Border
Carole Satyamurti, I Shall Paint My Nails Red
David St. John, Hush
Alice Fulton, What I Like
Writing Effectively: Walt Whitman
THINKING About Free Verse


24. Symbol
The Meanings of a Symbol
T. S. Eliot, The Boston Evening Transcript
Emily Dickinson, The Lightning is a yellow Fork
The Symbolist Movement
Identifying Symbols
Thomas Hardy, Neutral Tones
Matthew :—, The Parable of the Good Seed
George Herbert, Redemption
Edwin Markham, Outwitted
Suji Kwock Kim, Occupation
Robert Frost, The Road Not Taken
Antonio Machado , The Traveler
Christina Rossetti, Uphill
William Carlos Williams, The Young Housewife
Ted Kooser, Carrie
Mary Oliver, Wild Geese
Tami Haaland , Lipstick
Lorine Niedecker, Popcorn-can cover
Wallace Stevens , The Snow Man
Wallace Stevens, Anecdote of the Jar
Writing Effectively: William Butler Yeats
THINKING About Symbols


25. Myth and Narrative
Origins of Myth
Robert Frost, Nothing Gold Can Stay
William Wordsworth, The world is too much with us
H. D., Helen
Edgar Allan Poe, To Helen
Louise Bogan, Medusa
John Keats, La Belle Dame sans Merci
Personal Myth
William Butler Yeats, The Second Coming
Gregory Orr, Two Lines from the Brothers Grimm
Myth and Popular Culture
Charles Martin, Taken Up
A. E. Stallings, First Love: A Quiz
Anne Sexton, Cinderella
Writing Effectively: Anne Sexton
THINKING about Myth


26. Poetry and Personal Identity
Confessional Poetry
Sylvia Plath, Lady Lazarus
Identity Poetics
Rhina Espaillat, Bilingual/Bilingüe
Culture, Race, and Ethnicity
Claude McKay, America
Shirley Geok-lin Lim, Riding Into California
Francisco X. Alarcón, The X in My Name
Judith Ortiz Cofer, Quiñceañera
Sherman Alexie, The Powwow at the End of the World
Yusef Komunyakaa, Facing It
Anne Stevenson, Sous-Entendu
Carolyn Kizer, Bitch
Rafael Campo, For J. W.
Donald Justice, Men at Forty
Adrienne Rich, Women
Katha Pollitt, Mind-Body Problem
Andrew Hudgins, Elegy for My Father, Who Is Not Dead
Brian Turner , The Hurt Locker
Philip Larkin, Aubade
Writing Effectively: Rhina Espaillat
THINKING About Poetic Voice and Identity


27. Translation
Is Poetic Translation Possible?
World Poetry
Li Po, Moon-Beneath Alone Drink (literal translation)
Translated by Arthur Waley, Drinking Alone by Moonlight
Comparing Translations
Horace, “Carpe Diem” Ode (Latin text)
Horace, “Carpe Diem” Ode (literal translation)
Translated by Edwin Arlington Robinson, Horace to Leuconoe
Translated by A. E. Stallings, A New Year’s Toast
Translating Form
Omar Khayyam, Rubai XII (Persian text)
Omar Khayyam, Rubai XII (literal translation)
Translated by Edward FitzGerald, A Book of Verses underneath the Bough
Translated by Dick Davis, I Need a Bare Sufficiency
Omar Khayyam, Rubaiyat
Translated by Edward FitzGerald, Come, fill the Cup, and in the fire of Spring
Translated by Edward FitzGerald, Some for the Glories of this World
Translated by Edward FitzGerald, The Moving Finger writes
Translated by Edward FitzGerald, Ah Love! could you and I with Him conspire
Anonymous, We four lads from Liverpool are
Hugh Kingsmill, What, still alive at twenty-two?
Andrea Paterson, Because I Could Not Dump
Harryette Mullen, Dim Lady
Gene Fehler, If Richard Lovelace Became a Free Agent
Aaron Abeyta, thirteen ways of looking at a tortilla
Writing Effectively: Arthur Waley
THINKING about Parody


28. Poetry in Spanish
Sor Juana, Presente en que el Cariño Hace Regalo la Llaneza
Translated by Diane Thiel, A Simple Gift Made Rich by Affection
Pablo Neruda, Muchos Somos
Translated by Alastair Reid, We Are Many
Jorge Luis Borges, On his blindness
Translated by Robert Mezey, On His Blindness
Octavio Paz, Con los ojos cerrados
Translated by Eliot Weinberger, With eyes closed
Surrealism in Latin American Poetry
Frida Kahlo, The Two Fridas
César Vallejo, La cólera que quiebra al hombre en niños
Translated by Thomas Merton, Anger
Contemporary Mexican Poetry
José Emilio Pacheco, Alta Traición
Translated by Alastair Reid, High Treason
Tedi López Mills, Convalecencia
Pedro Serrano, Golondrinas
Translated by Anna Crowe, Swallows
Writing Effectively: Alastair Reid on Writing, Translating Neruda


29. Recognizing Excellence
Anonymous, O Moon, when I gaze on thy beautiful face
Emily Dickinson, A Dying Tiger — moaned for Drink
Rod McKuen, Thoughts on Capital Punishment
William Stafford, Traveling Through the Dark
Recognizing Excellence
William Butler Yeats, Sailing to Byzantium
Arthur Guiterman, On the Vanity of Earthly Greatness
Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ozymandias
Robert Hayden, Frederick Douglass
Elizabeth Bishop, One Art
John Keats, Ode to a Nightingale
Walt Whitman, O Captain! My Captain!
Dylan Thomas , In My Craft or Sullen Art
Paul Laurence Dunbar, We Wear the Mask
Emma Lazarus, The New Colossus
Edgar Allan Poe, Annabel Lee
Writing Effectively: Edgar Allan Poe
THINKING about Evaluating a Poem


30. What Is Poetry?
Archibald MacLeish, Ars Poetica


31. Two Critical Casebooks: Dickinson and Hughes
Success is counted sweetest
I Taste a Liquor Never Brewed
Wild Nights — Wild Nights!
I Felt a Funeral, in my Brain
I’m Nobody! Who are you?
The Soul selects her own Society
Some keep the Sabbath going to Church
After great pain, a formal feeling comes
Much Madness is divinest Sense
This is my letter to the World
I heard a Fly buzz — when I died
Because I could not stop for Death
Tell all the Truth but tell it slant
There is no Frigate like a Book
Emily Dickinson on Emily Dickinson

Critics on Emily Dickinson
The Negro Speaks of Rivers
My People
Mother to Son
Dream Variations
I, Too
The Weary Blues
Song for a Dark Girl
Ballad of the Landlord
Theme for English B
Nightmare Boogie
Harlem [Dream Deferred]
Langston Hughes on Langston Hughes

Critics on Langston Hughes


32. Critical Casebook: T. S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
T. S. Eliot on Writing

Critics on "Prufrock"


33. Poems for Further Reading
Anonymous, Lord Randall
Anonymous, The Three Ravens
Anonymous , Last Words of the Prophet
Anonymous, The Twa Corbies
Matthew Arnold, Dover Beach
John Ashbery, At North Farm
Margaret Atwood, Siren Song
W. H. Auden, As I Walked Out One Evening
W. H. Auden, Musée des Beaux Arts
Jimmy Baca, Spliced Wire
Aphra Behn, A Thousand Marytrs
Elizabeth Bishop, Filling Station
William Blake, A Poison Tree
William Blake, Garden of Love
William Blake, The Tyger
William Blake, The Sick Rose
Anne Bradstreet, To My Dear and Loving Husband
Gwendolyn Brooks, The Mother
Gwendolyn Brooks, The Rites for Cousin Vit
Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Grief
Elizabeth Barrett Browning, How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count the Ways
Robert Browning, Porphyria's Lover
Robert Browning, Soliloquy of the Spanish Cloister
Charles Bukowski, Dostoevsky
George Gordon, Lord Byron, When We Two Parted
George Gordon, Lord Byron, The Ocean
George Gordon, Lord Byron, So We'll Go No More A-Roving
Lewis Carroll, The Walrus and the Carpenter
Lorna Dee Cervantes , Cannery Town in August
Geoffrey Chaucer, From The General Prologue
Geoffrey Chaucer, Merciless Beauty
G. K. Chesterton, The Donkey
John Ciardi, Most Like an Arch This Marriage
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Frost at Midnight
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Kubla Khan
Billy Collins, Care and Feeding
Hart Crane, My Grandmother’s Love Letters
Hart Crane, Chaplinesque
Stephen Crane, I saw a man pursuing the horizon
Stephen Crane, A man feared that he might find an assassin
E. E. Cummings, somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
E. E. Cummings, the Cambridge ladies who live in furnished souls
Marisa de los Santos, Perfect Dress
John Donne, The Good-Morrow
John Donne, Batter my heart, three-personed God
John Donne, Death be not proud
John Donne, The Flea
John Donne, A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning
Rita Dove, Daystar
John Dryden, To the Memory of Mr. Oldham
Paul Lawrence Dunbar, Sympathy
Paul Lawrence Dunbar, The Poet
T.S. Eliot, Preludes
T. S. Eliot, Journey of the Magi
Rhina Espaillat, Agua
Rhina Espaillat, Bra
Anne Finch, Countess of Winchilsea, Adam Posed
Robert Frost, Mowing
Robert Frost, Birches
Robert Frost, Mending Wall
Robert Frost, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Allen Ginsberg, A Supermarket in California
Dana Gioia, California Hills in August
Thomas Gray, Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard
Thomas Hardy, I Look into My Glass
Thomas Hardy, The Convergence of the Twain
Thomas Hardy, The Darkling Thrush
Thomas Hardy, Hap
HD, Oread
HD, Sea Rose
Seamus Heaney, Digging
Anthony Hecht, The Vow
George Herbert, The Collar
George Herbert, The Pulley
George Herbert, Love
Robert Herrick, Delight and Disorder
Robert Herrick, To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time
Tony Hoagland, Beauty
Gerard Manley Hopkins, No Worst, There is None
Gerard Manley Hopkins, Spring and Fall
Gerard Manley Hopkins, The Windhover
A. E. Housman, Into My Heart an Air that Kills
A. E. Housman, Epitaph on an Army of Mercenaries
A. E. Housman, Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
A. E. Housman, To an Athlete Dying Young
Randall Jarrell, The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner
Robinson Jeffers, Rock and Hawk
Ha Jin, Missed Time
Ben Jonson, On My First Son
Donald Justice, On the Death of Friends in Childhood
John Keats, Ode on a Grecian Urn
John Keats, When I have fears that I may cease to be
John Keats, To Autumn
John Keats, Ode on Melancholy
John Keats, On First Looking into Chapman's Homer
XJ Kennedy, In a Prominent Bar in Secaucus One Day
Suji Kwock Kim, Monologue for an Onion
Ted Kooser, Abandoned Farmhouse
Philip Larkin, Home is so Sad
Philip Larkin, Poetry of Departures
D. H. Lawrence, Piano
Denise Levertov, O Taste and See
Shirley Geok-lin Lim, Learning to Love America
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Tide Rises, The Tide Falls
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Proem to Eveangeline
Robert Lowell, Skunk Hour
Christopher Marlowe, The Passionate Shepherd to His Love
Andrew Marvell, To His Coy Mistress
Andrew Marvell, The Definition of Love
Andrew Marvell, The Garden
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Passer Mortuus Est
Edna St. Vincent Millay, First Fig
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Time does not bring relief
Edna St. Vincent Millay, Recuerdo
John Milton, When I consider how my light is spent
Marianne Moore, The Fish
Marianne Moore, Poetry
Marilyn Nelson, A Strange Beautiful Woman
Howard Nemerov, The War in the Air
Lorine Niedecker, Sorrow Moves in Wide Waves
Yone Noguchi, A Selection of Hokku
Sharon Olds, The One Girl at the Boys’ Party
Wilfred Owen, Futility
Wilfred Owen, Anthem for Doomed Youth
Sylvia Plath, Daddy
Edgar Allen Poe, The Raven
Edgar Allen Poe, Alone
Edgar Allan Poe, A Dream within a Dream
Alexander Pope, From an Essay on Man
Alexander Pope, A little Learning is a dang’rous Thing
Ezra Pound, The Garden
Ezra Pound, Portrait d'une Femme
Ezra Pound, The River-Merchant’s Wife: A Letter
Dudley Randall, A Different Image
John Crowe Ransom, Piazza Piece
Henry Reed, Naming of Parts
Adrienne Rich, Living in Sin
Edwin Arlington Robinson, Mr. Flood's Party
Edwin Arlington Robinson, Miniver Cheevy
Theodore Roethke, Elegy for Jane
Christina Rossetti, Song
Christina Rossetti, Amor Mundi
William Shakespeare, When daisies pied and violets blue
William Shakespeare, When icicles hang by the wall
William Shakespeare, When my love swears that she is made of truth
William Shakespeare, Poor soul, the center of my sinful earth
William Shakespeare, When, in disgrace with Fortune and men’s eyes
William Shakespeare, That time of year thou mayst in me behold
William Shakespeare, When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
William Shakespeare, My mistress’ eyes are nothing likethe sun
Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ode to the West Wind
Percy Bysshe Shelley,To -- [Music, when soft voices die]
Charles Simic , The Butcher Shop
Christopher Smart, For I will consider my Cat Jeoffry
Cathy Song, Stamp Collecting
William Stafford, The Farm on the Great Plains
Gertrude Stein, Susia Asado
Wallace Stevens, The Emperor of Ice-Cream
Wallace Stevens, Peter Quince at the Clavier
Jonathan Swift, A Description of the Morning
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from In Memorium AHH "Old yew, which graspest at the stones."
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from In Memorium AHH "Dark house, by which I once more steal"
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from In Memorium AHH "Be near me when my light is low."
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Ulysses
Diane Thiel, Memento Mori in Middle School
Dylan Thomas, Fern Hill
John Updike, Ex-Basketball Player
Derek Walcott, Sea Grapes
Margaret Walker, For Malcolm X
Edmund Waller, Go, Lovely Rose
Phillis Wheatley, On Being Brought from Africa to America
Walt Whitman, Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking
Walt Whitman, When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer
Walt Whiman, A Noiseless Patient Spider
Walt Whitman, from Song of the Open Road
Walt Whitman, I Hear America Singing
Richard Wilbur, The Writer
William Carlos Williams, To Waken an Old Lady
William Carlos Williams, The Young Housewife
William Carlos Williams, Danse Russe
William Carlos Williams, Spring and All
William Carlos Williams, Queen-Anne’s-Lace
William Wordsworth, Lines (Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey)
William Wordsworth, I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
William Wordsworth, Ode: Intimations of Immortality
William Wordsworth, Composed upon Westminster Bridge
James Wright, Autumn Begins in Martins Ferry, Ohio
Mary Sidney Wroth, In this strange labyrinth
Sir Thomas Wyatt, They flee from me that sometime did me sekë
William Butler Yeats, No Second Troy
William Butler Yeats, An Irish Airman Forsees His Death
William Butler Yeats, Crazy Jane Talks with the Bishop
William Butler Yeats, The Magi
William Butler Yeats, When You Are Old


A Conversation with David Ives


34. Reading a Play
Theatrical Conventions
Elements of a Play
Susan Glaspell, Trifles
Analyzing Trifles
Writing Effectively: Susan Glaspell
THINKING About a Play


35. Modes of Drama: Tragedy and Comedy
Christopher Marlowe, Scene From Doctor Faustus (Act 2, Scene 1)
David Ives, Sure Thing
Writing Effectively: David Ives
THINKING about Comedy


36. Critical Casebook: Sophocles
The Theater of Sophocles
The Civic Role of Greek Drama
Aristotle’s Concept of Tragedy
The Origins of Oedipus the King
Sophocles, Oedipus the King
(Translated by Dudley Fitts and Robert Fitzgerald)
The Background of Antigonê
Sophocles, Antigoné
(Translated by Dudley Fitts and Robert Fitzgerald)
Critics on Sophocles
Writing Effectively: Robert Fitzgerald
THINKING About Greek Tragedy


37. Critical Casebook: Shakespeare
The Theater of Shakespeare
William Shakespeare
A Note on Othello
William Shakespeare, Othello, the Moor of Venice
The Background of Hamlet
William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
The Background of A Midsummer Night’s Dream
William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream
William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
William Shakespeare, MacBeth
William Shakespeare, The Tempest
Critics on Shakespeare
Writing Effectively: Ben Jonson
Understanding Shakespeare


38. The Modern Theater
Symbolism and Expressionism
American Modernism
Henrik Ibsen, A Doll’s House
(Translated by R. Farquharson Sharp, Revised by Viktoria Michelsen)
Henrik Ibsen on Writing, Correspondence on the Final Scene of A Doll’s House
Eugene O'Neill, The Hairy Ape
Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie
Tennessee Williams on Writing, How to Stage The Glass Menagerie
Tragicomedy and the Absurd
Return to Realism
Experimental Drama
Milcha Sanchez-Scott, The Cuban Swimmer
Milcha Sanchez-Scott on Writing, Writing The Cuban Swimmer
Documentary Drama
Anna Deavere Smith, Scenes from Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992
Anna Deavere Smith on Writing, A Call to the Community
THINKING About Dramatic Realism


39. Evaluating a Play
Judging a Play


40. Plays for Further Readings
David Henry Hwang, The Sound of a Voice
David Henry Hwang on Writing, Multicultural Theater
Edward Bok Lee, El Santo Americano
Edward Bok Lee on Writing
Jane Martin, Beauty
Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman
Arthur Miller on Writing, Tragedy and the Common Man
J.M. Synge, Riders to the Sea
August Wilson, Fences
August Wilson on Writing, A Look into Black America




41. Writing About Literature

Read Actively
Robert Frost, Nothing Gold Can Stay
Plan Your Essay
Pre-Writing: Discover Your Ideas
Sample Student Prewriting Exercises
Develop a Literary Argument
Write a Rough Draft
Revise Your Draft
Some Final Advice on Rewriting
Document Sources to Avoid Plagiarism
The Form of Your Finished Paper
Spell-Check and Grammar-Check Programs
Anonymous (after a poem by Jerrold H. Zar), A Little Poem Regarding Computer Spell Checkers


42. Writing About a Story
Read Actively
Think About the Story
Pre-Writing: Discover Your Ideas
Sample Student Prewriting Exercises
Write a Rough Draft
Revise Your Draft
What’s Your Purpose? Common Approaches to Writing About Fiction
The Card report
Comparison and Contrast
Response paper


43. Writing About a Poem
Read Actively
Robert Frost, Design
Think About the Poem
Pre-Writing: Discover Your Ideas
Sample Student Prewriting Exercises
Write a Rough Draft
Revise Your Draft
Common Approaches to Writing About Poetry
Comparison and contrast
Abbie Huston Evans, Wing-Spread
How to Quote a Poem
Robert Frost, In White


44. Writing About a Play
Read Critically
Common Approaches to Writing About Drama
Comparison and contrast
Card report
Drama review
How to Quote a Play
Topics for Writing


45. Writing a Research Paper
Browse the Research
Choose a Topic
Begin Your Research
Print Resources
Online Databases
Reliable Web Sources
Visual Images
Evaluate Your Sources
Organize Your Research
Refine Your Thesis
Organize Your Paper
Write and Revise
Maintain Academic Integrity
Acknowledge All Sources
Citing Ideas
Document Sources Using MLA Style
Parenthetical References
Works Cited List
Citing Print Sources in MLA Style
Citing Web Sources in MLA Style
Sample List of Works Cited
Endnotes and Footnotes
Reference Guide for Citations


46. Writing as Discovery: Keeping a Journal
The Rewards of Keeping a Journal
Sample Journal Entry
Sample Student Journal


47. Writing an Essay Exam
Taking an Essay Exam
Toni Cade Bambara, The Lesson


48. Critical Approaches to Literature
Formalist Criticism
Cleanth Brooks, The Formalist Critic
Michael Clark, Light and Darkness in “Sonny’s Blues”
Robert Langbaum, On Robert Browning’s “My Last Duchess”
Biographical Criticism
Leslie Fiedler, The Relationship of Poet and Poem
Brett C. Millier, On Elizabeth Bishop’s “One Art”
Emily Toth, The Source for AlcÉé LaballiÈre in “The Storm”
Historical Criticism
Hugh Kenner, Imagism
Seamus Deane, Joyce’s Dublin
Kathryn Lee Seidel, The Economics of Zora Neale Hurston’s “Sweat”
Psychological Criticism
Sigmund Freud, The Nature of Dreams
Gretchen Schulz and R. J. R. Rockwood, Fairy Tale Motifs in “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?
Harold Bloom, Poetic Influence
Mythological Criticism
Carl Jung, The Collective Unconscious and Archetypes
Northrop Frye, Mythic Archetypes
Edmond Volpe, Myth in Faulkner’s “Barn Burning”
Sociological Criticism
Georg Lukacs, Content Determines Form
Daniel P. Watkins, Money and Labor in “The Rocking-Horse Winner”
Alfred Kazin, Walt Whitman and Abraham Lincoln
Gender Criticism
Elaine Showalter, Toward a Feminist Poetics
Nina Pelikan Straus, Transformations in The Metamorphosis
Richard R. Bozorth, “Tell Me the Truth About Love”
Reader-Response Criticism
Stanley Fish, An Eskimo “A Rose for Emily”
Robert Scholes, “How Do We Make a Poem?”
Michael J. Colacurcio, The End of Young Goodman Brown
Deconstructionist Criticism
Roland Barthes, The Death of the Author
Barbara Johnson, Rigorous Unreliability
Geoffrey Hartman, On Wordsworth’s “A Slumber Did My Spirit Seal”
Cultural Studies
Vincent B. Leitch, Poststructuralist Cultural Critique
Mark Bauerlein, What Is Cultural Studies?
Camille Paglia, A Reading of William Blake’s “The Chimney Sweeper”

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