Paired Novels List 2015-16

American Literature and Composition 1
Instructor: Michael Thornton
October 8, 2015
PAIRED NOVELS for American Themes
Students will have to read a novel on their own this semester, and one next semester.
Each student will have to write a research paper on both novels – the paper will be the
primary assignment on the novel this semester; a paper and presentation with other
students will be required next semester.
These novels are paired to reflect the themes of the period. Read the novels in order.
Keep notes on the novels as they relate to the American experience. We will look at
research approaches and methods for this specific assignment, which will be distributed
at the beginning of November. The analysis will be due the beginning of December. By
the beginning of next week, you must tell the instructor your top three choices, of novel
pairs, to find out which pair you will read.
These epochal themes and literary movements are listed in chronological order, although
that is not the order in which we study them in class. There are three nonfiction books
listed as the second “novel” in these pairs.
Moby Dick by Herman Melville;
In the Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne;
Jasmine by Bharati Mukherjee
The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper
Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko
Portrait of a Lady by Henry James;
The Book of Common Prayer by Joan Didion
Oil by Upton Sinclair;
Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
My Antonia by Willa Cather;
Monkey Wrench Gang by Edward Abbey
The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane;
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
Go Tell It On The Mountain by James Baldwin;
Home by Marilynne Robinson
Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway;
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett;
The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote;
Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi
them by Joyce Carol Oates;
Tree of Smoke by Denis Johnson
Going After Cacciato by Tim O'Brien;
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar Hijuelos
Krik? Krak? by Edwidge Danticat
On the Road by Jack Kerouac;
Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
Bless Me Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya;
House Made of Dawn by N. Scott Momaday
Herzog by Saul Bellow;
White Noise by Don DeLillo
The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston;
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Caramelo by Sandra Cisneros;
How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents by Julia Alvarez
Generation X by Douglas Coupland;
Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer;
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz