The English portion of the American Studies exam consists of multiple-choice questions over Greek roots 13-25 and two essay questions. Here are the two final exam essay questions. You can use this space to ask questions, help each other, and think about options for your responses.
A. Choose two of the Big Ideas from American Studies. Discuss how each is reflected in four of the items below. (Please use different areas of study for each theme.)
• The Jungle
• Ethnic Day
--Emma Lazarus: "The New Colossus"
--Karen Finneyfrock: "The Newer Colossus"
--Samuel P. Huntington: "The Hispanic Challenge"
• Harry Mark Petrakis: “The Wooing of Ariadne”
--Amy Tan: "Rules of the Game"
--Tony Romano: from If You Eat, You Never Die
• Research Paper
• Theodore Roosevelt: Nature Writings
• William Faulkner: “A Rose for Emily” and Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech
• Ernest Hemingway: various stories and Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech
• Frank Lloyd Wright
• The Loop
• Langston Hughes: “Harlem (2)”
• The Great Gatsby
• The Grapes of Wrath
• Bruce Springsteen: “The Ghost of Tom Joad”
• Eudora Welty: “A Worn Path”
• Carl Sandburg: “Chicago”
• Rick Bragg: from Ava’s Man
• Writers Week XVII: preparation and presentations
• Randall Jarrell: “The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner”
• Studs Terkel: from “The Good War”
• John Updike: “A&P”
• Alyse Liebovich: “It Seems Wrong to be Happy”
• Music: “Over There,” Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, “White Christmas,” Elvis, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, more?
• culture projects
• art lectures, other things or intangibles
B. Referring to the post-Civil War era in American history and culture, discuss (1.) America’s greatest moments or accomplishments, (2.) America’s moments or circumstances when we were at less than our best, (3.) your assessment of what “America” means when all of these factors are considered together. (Please note: Your response to this question can either be prepared in advance and submitted on exam day, or you can write your response in class on exam day. Your choice.)