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Upper School Curriculum

  • Advanced (ADV)
  • English
ADV English 12: Love and Money in American Literature
Grade: 12
PREREQ: Teacher recommendation advised 

Why are we reluctant to talk about class in America? How do money and class shape, guide and limit our lives? Love and Money frames the discussion of class structure in America with an examination of Thorstein Veblen’s The Theory of the Leisure Class; then, students apply Veblen’s ideas to Edith Wharton’s The House of Mirth. A Modernist American poetry project asks students to research, explicate and deliver presentations focused on one American Modernist. To examine socioeconomic class and shifting twentieth-century depictions of Jewish-Americans, students analyze Philip Roth’s Goodbye, Columbus. To gain a better understanding of reader response theory and the factors that make a bestseller, students generate a historicist analysis of Erich Segal’s Love Story. To conclude the course, student teams will research and then lead class discussions of John Cheever short stories. 

  • Grade 12