Apush American Literature Essay Sample

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-Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, La Relación on the Spanish explorations born in 1490, died in 1558 in 1527 sailed from Spain on expedition to occupy North America and in 1528 landed in Tampa Bay Summary
Cabeza de Vaca’s ship is caught in a storm. Once it runs around on an island, the sailors encounter Native Americans. They are afraid the Indians will sacrifice them, however The Native Americans turn out sympathetic and offer the Spaniards food. After the ship wrecks once again, the Native Americans take the Spaniards to their lodges. Relation

The story talks about an attempt to colonize North America and the Spaniards encountering the Natives.

-William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation
born 1590, died 1657
an on/off governor of Plymouth between years 1621 and 1657
Bradford described Puritan’s obstacles in the New World and how they dealt with it. He also described how their faith in God grew stronger and how they prayed for help in new situations. Relation

The story describes Puritan’s life in New Colonies.

-Anne Bradstreet, Poems: “Verses upon the burning of Our House” and “Before the Birth of One of Her Children” born 1612, died 1672
only one of her poems/stories was published during her lifetime in 1650 Summary
In “Verses upon the Burning of Our House”, Bradstreet describes her feelings towards her burned home and how she’s internally dealing with it. In “Before the Birth of One of Her Children”, Bradstreet fears death in childbirth and writes a farewell message to her husband. Relation

Describes obstacles and fears of people living in New England in colonial times.

-Jonathan Edwards, Sermon : “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” born 1703, died 1758
In the sermon, Edwards talked about people having to start praying all the time because that’s what God wants and He will not forgive anyone who doesn’t do so. Relation
Played a role in the 1st Great Awakening and reshaped the religion in colonies for some time

-William Byrd II, The Secret Diary of William Byrd of Westover born 1674, died 1744 founder of Richmond, Virginia
Byrd talked about his everyday life. He talks about anything, from what he had for breakfast, to his romantic affairs. Relation
It describes life in colonial times.

-Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack
born 1706, died 1790
helped with writing the Declaration of Independence in 1776
A gazette published from 1732 to 1758. It was very popular during colonial times. People read it for seasonal weather forecasts, practical household hints, puzzles, and other amusements it offered. Relation

It shows how people in colonial times spend their free time, what entertained them, and what were the major views on life in that period.

-Thomas Paine, Common Sense
born 1737, died 1809
A list of reasons why the Colonies should rebel against Britain. Paine attacked the British monarchy suggesting that the government had many flaws and it was not able to rule the Colonies over the Atlantic Ocean. Relations

It helped unite people towards revolution.

-Thomas Jefferson, Declaration of Independence
born 1743, died 1826
3rd President of US from 1801 to 1809
The document describes why the Colonies decided the British government is ineffective and why the Colonies decided to unite and come out as it’s own nation.

-Hector St.John de Crèvecoeur, Letters from an American Farmer born 1735, died 1813
12 letters describing life in America. Each letter talked about different issues such as slavery, farming conditions and the idea of Americans trying to create a utopian society. Relation
It described how a farm in the South lived during those times.

Group 2: Early Nineteenth Century Romantics
-Washington Irving, The Sketch Book, including “Rip Van Winkle” and “the Headless Horseman” born 1783, died 1859
Essays Irving wrote while he was staying with his sister in England.

-James Fenimore Cooper, The Last of the Mohicans
born 1789, died 1851
Two sisters during the French Indian War are led through the woods to meet with their father, however they encounter problems but are helped by a skilled woodsman.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays
born 1803, died 1882
Represented the core of his thinking.

-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter
born 1804, died 1864
A 17th century woman who lives in a Puritan town is accused of adultery. Relation
Shows Puritans ideas and morals in life.

-Henry David Thoreau, Walden
born 1817, died 1862
The book is about a men who spends two years away from civilization.

-Herman Melville, Moby Dick
born 1819, died 1891
The book is about men who go on an adventure across the Atlantic Ocean hunting sperm whales.

-Fredrick Douglass, Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass, an American Slave born 1818, died 1895
The books talks about his journey from slavery to freedom.

-Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom’s Cabin
born 1811, died 1896
The book talks about a slave’s journey from an owner to an owner and different owner’s different attitudes toward the slave.

Group 3: Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century Realists

-Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
born 1835, died 1910
A fictional story about little boy’s journey through the south-west of US with his aunt’s former slave.

-Frank Norris, The Octopus
born 1870, died 1902
Described raising wheat in California and the conflicts between the wheat growers and railway companies. Relation
Addressed a very popular, at the time, conflict between farmers and railroad companies.

-Upton Sinclair, The Jungle
born 1878, died 1968
A fictional story based on true stories about the working conditions in factories. Relation
As the factories grew bigger and stronger, the conditions for the workers worsened and it grew into a bigger issue, which Sinclair addressed.

-Stephen Crane, Maggie: A Girl of the Streets
born 1871, died 1945
A story about a girl who lives in poverty, and most likely becomes a prostitute. Relation
As the urban areas grew at the end of the 19th century, so did the poverty in those cities which led many young girls to prostitution.

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