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The Heath Anthology of American Literature, Fifth Edition
Paul Lauter, General Editor
Sample Assignments

Enlightenment Philosophy and the American Revolution
Lois Leveen, May 18, 2001

Description of the course in which the approach to teaching with the Heath Anthology was used:
I've used this lesson in a number of different courses, even ones in which this particular text is NOT assigned (for example, when teaching Phillis Wheatley in a course on the political voices of American women poets). It works in a lecture course, although ideally I like students to participate in explicating the passage -- something that works in a 60 student lecture but that can't happen as well in a 200 student lecture. And of course it works well in smaller discussion sections too.

Course coverage:
General American Literature Survey

What pedagogical goals do you think this approach to teaching with the Heath Anthology achieves:
My students often have little historical background, and I want to help them understand the shift from earlier religious models of thinking that came with the Enlightenment. While religious thought, particularly Christianity, continued to influence American society and literature, students need to be aware of what is radically different in the thinking underlying the Declaration and other texts and behaviors of the Revolutionary period.

Relevant URLs:
None listed.

Keywords:
Revolutionary War

Related authors and groups:
Thomas Jefferson



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