English IV

Instructor: Jack Kaulfus
Class Description: English IV’s focus is on fictional literary works. Students will read and carefully analyze a broad and challenging range of literary selections, including poems, music lyrics, novels, plays, creative nonfiction, short stories, and experimental fictional media.

Selected American literature and World literature representative of various cultures, philosophies, and time periods will be read and examined for comparative reasons.  Students will learn, through close reading, to analyze literary devices, diction, tone, narrative structure, theme, point of view, and poetic devices.  They will then practice communicating their ideas through various modes of academic and creative writing.

The most important part of this class involves the recognition of symbol and structure in literature as a direct reflection of the lives we live. Once those patterns become recognizable to us, the world begins to feel more connected and accessible.

Units include:

  • Invisibility and the American Dream: Harlem Renaissance, Modernism, and the rise of voiceless
  • Truth and Storytelling: Vietnam: two sides of the same war
  • Family Ties and Power: Shifting dynamics in family relationships
  • Annual Short Story Contest: Student judged. This year’s theme: “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”
  • Finding Purpose in Humanity: Existentialism, Idealism, and Free Will