essay for english class
Essay (Do One Of Three topics) 3 pgs
Directions: In a well-constructed essay that discusses at least three but no more than five works—at least one of which must come from works discussed (that is, works from Ralph Ellison(American Prose Since 1945),Arthur Miller(Death of a salesman), Don DeLillo (White Noise), Toni Morrison (Beloved), answer one of the following three questions:
1. How have writers constructed the idea of the American dream in their work? What are the constituent parts of the American dream, and what attitude (enthusiasm? critique? both?) do American writers offer about it?
2. Many of the works we’ve read this semester end with a character who has liberated him- or herself from the shackles of a conformist society, but who pays a heavy price for it. Discuss a number of works in which this occurs. What are our writers saying about the price of freedom in America?
3. Here’s a famous excerpt from Langston Hughes’ poem “Harlem”:
What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up--like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore—and then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over—like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags,
Like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?
How do you think three of the African-American writers we have read in this class (among them, Booker T. Washington, WEB DuBois, Ralph Ellison, Toni Morrison, and even Hughes himself [in his poem “Theme for English B”]) would respond to this poem? Where would they agree and disagree with one another? Why?
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