American Literature

American Literature

84 Lectures on American Literature by Dr. Arnold Weinstein, the Edna and Richard Salomon Distinguished Professor at Brown University.

These lectures are from The Great Courses 

  • Explain the roles of self-reliance and the “self-made man” in the evolution of American literature
  • Identify the tenets of American Romanticism
  • Describe the evolution of the American ghost story, from Poe and Hawthorne to James and Morrison
  • Outline the epic strain in American literature, from Melville and Whitman to Faulkner and Ellison
  • Explain the importance of slavery as a critical subject for Stowe, Twain, Faulkner, and Morrison
  • Summarize perspectives on nature revealed in poets Whitman, Dickinson, Frost, and Eliot
  • Identify the tenets of Modernism in the work of Eliot, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, and Faulkner
  • Identify the contributions of O’Neill, Miller, and Williams to American theater
  • Summarize the threads of the complex relationship between America’s great writers and the past.

Lecture-01-Introduction-to-Classics-of-American-Literature.

Lecture-02-Benjamin-Franklins-Autobiography_-The-First-American-Story.

Lecture-03-Washington-Irving_-The-First-American-Storyteller.

Lecture-04-Ralph-Waldo-Emerson-Yesterday_-Americas-Coming-of-Age.

Lecture-06-Emerson-Tomorrow_-Deconstructing-Culture-and-Self.

Lecture-07-Henry-David-Thoreau_-Countercultural-Hero.

Lecture-08-Thoreau_-Stylist-and-Humorist-Extraordinaire.

Lecture-09-Walden_-Yesterday-Today-and-Tomorrow.

Lecture-10-Edgar-Allan-Poe.

Lecture-11-Poe_-Ghost-Writer.

Lecture-12-Poes-Legacy_-The-Self-as-Haunted-Palace.

Lecture-13-Nathaniel-Hawthorne-and-the-American-Past.

Lecture-14-The-Scarlet-Letter_-Puritan-Romance.

Lecture-15-Hawthornes-A_-Interpretation-and-Semiosis.

Lecture-16-The-Scarlet-Letter_-Political-Tract-or-Psychological-Study.

Lecture-17-Hawthorne-Our-Contemporary.

Lecture-18-Herman-Melville-and-the-Making-of-Moby-Dick.

Lecture-19-The-Biggest-Fish-Story-of-Them-All.

Lecture-20-Ahab-and-the-White-Whale.

Lecture-21-Moby-Dick_-Tragedy-of-Perspective.

Lecture-22-Melvilles-Benito-Cereno_-American-Misadventure-at-Sea.

Lecture-23-Benito-Cereno_-Theater-of-Power-or-Power-of-Theater

Lecture-24-Walt-Whitman_-The-American-Bard-Appears.

Lecture-25-Whitman_-Poet-of-the-Body.

Lecture-26-Whitman_-Poet-of-the-City

Lecture-27-Whitman_-Poet-of-Death.

Lecture-28-The-Whitman-Legacy.

Lecture-29-Uncle-Toms-Cabin_-The-Unread-Classic.

Lecture-30-Stowes-Representation-of-Slavery.

Lecture-31-Freedom-and-Art-in-Uncle-Toms-Cabin.

Lecture-32-Emily-Dickinson_-In-and-Out-of-Nature.

Lecture-33-Dickinsons-Poetry_-Language-and-Consciousness.

Lecture-34-Dickinson_-Devotee-of-Death.

Lecture-35-Dickinson_-Amhersts-Madame-de-Sade.

Lecture-36-Dickinsons-Legacy.

Lecture-37-The-Adventures-of-Tom-Sawyer_-American-Paradise-Regained.

Lecture-38-Huckleberry-Finn_-The-Banned-Classic.

Lecture-39-Huckleberry-Finn_-A-Childs-Voice-a-Childs-Vision.

Lecture-40-Huckleberry-Finn-American-Orphan.

Lecture-41-Mark-Twains-Puddnhead-Wilson_-Black-and-White-Charade.

Lecture-42-Henry-James-and-the-Novel-of-Perception.

Lecture-43-The-Turn-of-the-Screw_-Do-You-Believe-in-Ghosts.

Lecture-44-Turning-the-Screw-of-Interpretation.

Lecture-45-Stephen-Crane-and-the-Literature-of-War.

Lecture-46-The-Red-Badge-of-Courage_-Brave-New-World.

Lecture-47-Stephen-Crane_-Scientist-of-Human-Behavior.

Lecture-48-Charlotte-Perkins-Gilman_-War-Against-Patriarchy.

Lecture-49-The-Yellow-Wallpaper_-Descent-into-Hell-or-Free-at-Last.

Robert Frost and  the-Spirit of New England

Lecture-51-Robert-Frost_-At-Home-in-the-Metaphor.

Lecture-52-Robert-Frost-and-the-Fruits-of-the-Earth.

Lecture-53-T.S.-Eliot_-Unloved-Modern-Classic.

Lecture-54-T.S.-Eliot_-The-Waste-Land-and-Beyond.

Lecture-55-F.-Scott-Fitzgeralds-The-Great-Gatsby_-American-Romance.

Lecture-56-The-Great-Gatsby_-A-Story-of-Lost-Illusions.

Lecture-57-Fitzgeralds-Triumph_-Writing-the-American-Dream.

Lecture-58-Ernest-Hemingways-The-Sun-Also-Rises_-Novel-of-the-Lost-Generation.

Lecture-59-The-Sun-Also-Rises_-Spiritual-Quest.

Lecture-61-Hemingways-The-Garden-of-Eden_-Female-Desire-Unleashed.

Lecture-62-The-Garden-of-Eden_-Combat-Zone

Lecture-63-William-Faulkners-The-Sound-and-the-Fury_-The-Idiots-Tale.

Lecture-64-The-Sound-and-the-Fury_-Failed-Rites-of-Passage.

Lecture-65-The-Sound-and-the-Fury_-Signifying-Nothing.

Lecture-66-Absalom-Absalom_-Civil-War-Epic.

Lecture-67-Absalom-Absalom_-The-Language-of-Love.

Lecture-68-Absalom-Absalom_-The-Overpass-to-Love.

Lecture-69-The-Grapes-of-Wrath_-American-Saga.

Lecture-70-John-Steinbeck_-Poet-of-the-Little-Man.

Lecture-71-The-Grapes-of-Wrath_-Reconceiving-Self-and-Family.

Lecture-72-Invisible-Man_-Black-Bildungsroman.

Lecture-73-Invisible-Man_-Reconceiving-History-and-Race

Lecture-74-Invisible-Man_-What-Did-I-Do-to-Be-So-Black-and-Blue.

Lecture-75-Eugene-ONeill_-Great-God-of-American-Theater.

Lecture-76-Long-Days-Journey-Into-Night_-Theres-No-Place-Like-Home.

Lecture-77-Tennessee-Williams_-Managing-Libido

Lecture-78-A-Streetcar-Named-Desire_-The-Death-of-Romance

Lecture-79-Death-of-a-Salesman_-Death-of-an-Ethos.

Lecture-80-Death-of-a-Salesman_-Tragedy-of-the-American-Dream

Lecture-81-Toni-Morrisons-Beloved_-Dismembering-and-Remembering

Lecture-82-Beloved_-A-Story-of-Thick-Love

Lecture-83-Beloved_-Morrisons-Writing-of-the-Body

Lecture-84-Conclusion-to-Classics-of-American-Literature

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