Literature and Society: 2009 MLA Update

Paperback | February 1, 2011

byPamela J. Annas, Robert C. Rosen

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This thematic anthology has been updated to reflect the changes in the MLA Guidlines and features comprehensive writing coverage that highlights both the writing process and how to write about fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction.  It introduces and explains literature with reading selections centered on five enduring themes–Growing Up and Growing Older, Women and Men, Money and Work, Peace and War, and Varieties of Protest.

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This thematic anthology has been updated to reflect the changes in the MLA Guidlines and features comprehensive writing coverage that highlights both the writing process and how to write about fiction, poetry, drama, and nonfiction.  It introduces and explains literature with reading selections centered on five enduring themes–Growing ...

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“The Editor’s purpose and approach seems to be similar to my goals in finding a text for an introductory literature classroom:  having apparatus but not weaving it through the whole text, including depth and diversity of authors, using themes to guide students into the wonders of literature while making it easier to understand by (the...

Format:PaperbackDimensions:1536 pages, 9 × 6.03 × 1.43 inPublished:February 1, 2011Publisher:Pearson EducationLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0205184677

ISBN - 13:9780205184675

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Extra Content

Table of Contents


Taking Notes. Exploratory Writing. Inventing an Approach. Outlining.


Surviving the Writing Process

Revising and Editing

The Whole Paper. Paragraphs. Beginnings and Endings. Sentences and Words.

Revising and Editing: An Example

Writing Under Pressure: The Essay Exam

Kinds of Writing

Free Writing. Explication. Response. Analysis. Comparison/Contrast.

Review. Research. Critical Reading Journal.

Passages from Student Critical Reading Journals

Sample Explication Paper: Original and Revision

Academic Honesty. Citation. Titles. Quotations. Documentation. 1. The Worked Cited Approach. Electronic Resources. Citing Your Paper. The Endnote/Footnote Approach. Explanatory Footnotes. Final Manuscript Preparation




Aldous Huxley, from Brave New World.

Jamaica Kincaid, Girl.

Toni Morrison, from The Bluest Eye.

Sandra Cisneros, The Family of Little Feet.

Ocavia Butler, Bloodchild.   

James Baldwin, Sonny’s Blues.

Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown.

Sherman Alexie, Jesus Christ’s Half Brother Is Alive and Well on the Spokane Indian Reservation.

Mary E. Wilkins Freeman, A Mistaken Charity.


Walt Whitman, We Two Boys Together Clinging.

Audre Lorde, From The House Of Yemanja.

Robert Hayden, Those Winter Sundays.

Sylvia Plath, The Colossus.

Philip Levine, Among Children.

Gwendolyn Brooks, The Mother.

Sharon Olds, The Language of the Brag.

John Updike, Ex-Basketball Player.

T.S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.

William Butler Yeats, Sailing to Byzantium . 

William Shakespeare, That Time of Year Thou Mayst in Me Behold.

William Carlos Williams, To a Poor Old Woman.

Irena Klepfisz, They Did Not Build Wings For Them.

Patricia Smith, Undertaker.

Gwendolyn Brooks, The Bean Eaters.

Joy Harjo, Remember.             

John Keats, When I Have Fears.

Walt Whitman, A Child Said What Is the Grass?

Gerard Manley Hopkins, Spring and Fall.

Edna St.Vincent Milay, Grown- Up.

Edna St.Vincent Milay, What Lips My Lips Have Kissed.

E.E.Cummings, In Just-

Margaret Walker, Lineage.

Theodore Roethke, My Papa’s Waltz.

Dylan Thomas, Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night.

Gwendolyn Brooks, We Real Cool.

James Wright, Autumn Begins in Martins Ferry, Ohio .

Patricia Smith, Discovering Country.

Toi Derricotte, Tansition.

Joy Harjo, Rainy Dawn.

Tino Villanueva, Not Knowing, in Atzlan.

Lloyd Schwartz, Leaves.

Pat Mora, Immigrants.

Simon J.Ortiz, My Father’s Song.

Ron Schreiber, diagnosis ( 4-10-86 ).

Essex Hemphill, June 25.

Olav H. Hague, I Pass the Arctic Circle .

Ory Bernstein, A Son Seeing His Mother Seeing Death.


Samuel Becket, Krapp’s Last Tape.

Wakako Yamauchi, And the Soul Shall Dance.


Maxine Hong Kingston, No Name Woman.

Audre Lorde, from Zami: A New Spelling of My Name.

Tommy Avicolli Mecca, He Defies You Still:  The Memoirs of a Sissy.

Dorothy Allison, Gun Crazy.

Joy Harjo, Three Generations of Native American Women’s Birth Experience.

Growing Up and Growing Older Paper Topics.




Charlotte Perkins Gilman, The Yellow Wallpaper.

Ernest Hemmingway, Hills Like White Elephants.

Raymond Carver, Signals.

Hisaye Yamamoto, Seventeen Syllables.

Christina Garcia, Ines in the Kitchen. 

John Updike, A & P.

Judy Grahn, Boys at the Rodeo.

Kate Chopin, The Story of an Hour.

Jean Toomer, Fern.

Tahira Naqui, A Man of Integrity.  


John Donne, The Flea.

William Blake, The Garden of Love .

Edna St. Vincent Millay, An Ancient Gesture.

D.H. LAWRENCE, Gloire De Dijon.

Elizabeth Bishop, One Art.

Anne Sexton, Her Kind.

Amiri Baraka, Beautiful Black Women…

Karl Shapiro, Buick.

Ted Hughes, The Lovepet.

Olga Broumas, Cinderella.

Louise Erdrich, Jacklight.

Tess Gallagher, I Stop Writing the Poem.

Alma Luz Villanueva, Crazy Courage.

Alberta Hunter And Lovie Austin, Song: Down-Hearted Blues.

Tupac Shakur, Song: Keep Ya Head Up.                  

Annonymous, Song of Solomon.

Christopher Marlowe, The Passionate Shepherd to His Love.

William Shakespeare, When My Love Swears That She is Made of Truth.

John Donne, The Sun Rising.

John Donne, The Canonization.

Andrew Marvell, To His Coy Mistress.

Walt Whitman, To a Stranger.

Walt Whitman, I Saw in Louisiana a Live Oak Growing.

Emily Dickinson, My Life Had Stood-a Loaded Gun.

Amy Lowell, A Decade.

Claude Mckay, The Harlem Dancer.

William Butler Yeats, Leda and the Swan.

Louise Bogan, Women.

Gladys Bentley, Song: How Much Can I Stand?

Edna St. Vincent Millay, Love is Not All: it is Not Meat Nor Drink.

Léopold Sédar Senghor, You Held the Black Face.

Langston Hughes, Mellow.

Marge Piercy, The Woman in the Ordinary.

Muriel Rukeyser, Waiting for Icarus.

Ntozake Shange, Somebody Almost Walked off Wid Alla my Stuff.

Adrienne Rich, Poem XI from Twenty-one Love Poems.

Alice Bloch, Six Years.

Martha Collins, Several Things.

Judith Ortiz Cofer, Claims.

Barbara Kingsolver, This House I Cannot Leave.

Stefanie Marlis, Transsexual Cloud. 

Pablo Neruda, Every Day You Play.


John M. Synge, Riders to the Sea.

William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of Othello, The Moor of Venice .

Susan Glaspell, Trifles.


Virginia Woolf, Shakespeare's Sister.

Sojourner Truth, Ain't I a Woman.

Judy Brady, I Want a Wife.

Richard Rodriguez, Huck Finn, Dan Quayle, and the Value of Acceptance.

Women and Men: Paper Topics.




Tillie Olsen, I Stand Here Ironing.

Ann Petry, from The Street.

William Faulkner, Spotted Horses.

B.Traven, Assembly Line.

Pietro Di Donato, from Christ in Concrete.

Tom Kromer, from Waiting for Nothing.

Toni Cade Bambara, The Lesson.

Alice Walker, Everyday Use.

Harvey Pekar, Hypothetical Quandary.


Bertolt Brecht, A Worker Reads History.

Jonathan Swift, A Description of the Morning.

Theodore Roethke, Dolor.

Judy Grahn, Ella, in a Square Apron, Along Highway 80.

Carl Sandburg, Chicago.

Jimmy Santiago Baca, So Mexicans are Taking Jobs from Americans.

Julia Alvarez, Homecoming.

Gwendolyn Brooks, Bronzeville Woman in a Red Hat.

Langston Hughes, Ballad of the Landlord.

Laureen Mar, My Mother, Who Came From China , Where She Never Saw Snow

Philip Levine, You Can Have It.

Mary Fell, The Triangle.  

William Blake, The Chimney Sweeper.

William Wordsworth, The World Is Too Much With Us.

Anonymous, Song: We Raise de Wheat.

Thomas Hardy, The Ruined Maid.

Matthew Arnold, West London .

Sarah Cleghorn, The Golf Links Lie So Near the Mill.

Fenton Johnson, Tired,

Countee Cullen, For a Lady I Know,

Anonymous, Song: Let Them Wear Their Watches Fine,

Easy Papa Johnson (Roosevelt Sykes), Song: Cotton Seed Blues.

D.H.Lawrence, City Life.

Bertolt Brecht, Song of the Invigorating Effect of Money.

C. Day Lewis, Come, Live with me and be My Love.

Robert Frost, Two Tramps in Mud Time.

Muriel Rukeyser, Boy with His Hair Cut Short.

Woody Guthrie, Song: Plane Wreck at Los Gatos (Deportees).

Nazim Hikmet, About Your Hands and Lies.

Mafika Mbuli, The Miners.

Susan Griffin, This Is the Story of the Day in the Life of a Woman Trying.

Marge Piercy, The Market Economy.

June Jordan, Free Flight.

Lorna Dee Cervantes, Cannery Town in August.

Kate Rushin, The Black Back Ups.

Bruce Springsteen, Song: My Hometown.

Patricia Dobler, Uncles' Advice, 1957.

Maggie Anderson, Mining Camp Residents West Virginia , July, 1935.

Todd Jailer, Bill Hastings.

Sherman Alexie, The Reservation Cab Driver.

Ruth Stone, Eden, Then and Now.


Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman.

August Wilson, The Piano Lesson.


Meridel Le Sueur,  Women on the Breadlines.

Richard Wright, The Man Who Went to Chicago.

Dorothy Allison, A Question of Class.     

Studs Terkel, Mike Lefevre: Who Built the Pyramids.

Money and Work: Paper Topics.




Ray Bradbury, August 2026: There Will Come Soft Rains.

Ambrose Bierce, An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge .  

Toni Morrison, 1919. 

Louise Erdrich, The Red Convertible.     

Donald Barthelme, Report.

Tim O'brien, The Man I Killed.   

Ghassan Kanafani, Letter from Gaza .


Wilfred Owen, Dulce Et Decorum Est.

Emily Dickinson, Flags Vex a Dying Face.

H.D., Helen.

Margaret Atwood, At First I was Given Centuries.

E.E. Cummings, Next to of Course God America .

Dwight Okita, In Response to Executive Order 9066: All Americans of Japanese Descent Must Report to Relocation Centers.                           

Carolyn Forché, The Colonel.

Denise Levertov, Life at War.

Muriel Rukeyser, Waking This Morning.

Carmen Tafolla, How Shall I Tell You?

Jay Parini, After the Terror.

Adrienne Rich, The School Among the Ruins.                                            

Sappho, To an Army Wife, in Sardis .

Richard Lovelace, To Lucasta, Going to the Wars.

John Milton, On the Late Massacre at Piemont.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The Charge of the Light Brigade.

Rudyard Kipling, Tommy.

John Mccrae, In Flanders Fields.

Walt Whitman, The Dying Veteran.

Emily Dickinson, Flags Vex a Dying Face.

Margaret Sackville, Nostra Culpa.

Marina Tsvetayeva, A White Low Sun'.

Siegfried Sassoon, Does it Matter?

William Butler Yeats, An Irish Airman Foresees His Death.

Alice Dunbar-Nelson, I Sit and Sew.

William Butler Yeats, The Second Coming.

E.E.Cummings, My Sweet Old Etcetera.

Federico García Lorca, Ballad of the Spanish Civil Guard.

Babette Deutsch, Dawn in Wartime.

Gwendolyn Brooks, The White Troops Had Their Orders but the Negroes Looked Like Men.

Claude Mckay, Look Within.

Henry Reed, Naming of Parts.

Yevgeny Yevtushenko, The Companion.

Robert Lowell, For the Union Dead.

Nguyen Lam Son, Can Tho.

Langston Hughes, Without Benefit of Declaration.

Otto Orban, Chile .

Bruce Weigl, Song of Napalm.

Thomas Mcgrath, Reading the Names of the Vietnam War Dead.

Margaret Atwood, The Loneliness of the Military Historian.

Barbara Kingsolver, Deadline.

Bekes Jr (Sherko Faiq), Picture.

Yousif Al-Sa’igh, An Iraqi Evening.

Ahmed Herdi, God’s Freedom Fighters.

Fadjo; Al-Azzawi, The Last Iraq .

Jennifer Campton, The Soldier Born in 1983.

Martin Espada, Alabanza: In Praise of Local 100.


Marc Kaminsky, In the Traffic of a Targeted City.


Black Elk, The Butchering at Wounded Knee .   

Martin Luther King, JR., from A Time to Break Silence. 

Marjane Satrapi, from Persepolis .

Brian Doyle, Leap.

Peace and War: Paper Topics. 




Herman Melville, Bartleby, the Scrivener. 

Pamela Zoline, The Heat Death of the Universe.   

James Alan Mcpherson, A Loaf of Bread.

John Steinbeck, from The Grapes of Wrath and “The Wandering Wage Earner”.     

Dorothy Canfield Fisher, A Drop in the Bucket.

Alan Sillitoe, The Loneliness of the Long-distance Runner.


Margaret Walker, For My People.

Susan Griffin, I Like to Think of Harriet Tubman.

Adrienne Rich, The Trees.

Raymond R. Patterson, At That Moment.

Jo Carson, I Cannot Remember All the Times . . .

Allen Ginsberg, America .

Essex Hemphill, Baby Can You Love Me?

William Butler Yeats, The Lake Isle of Innisfree.

Martin Espada, Jorge the Church Janitor Finally Quits.

Julia Alvarez, The White House Has Disinvited the Poets.

Judy Grahn, A Woman is Talking to Death.

Walt Whitman, To the States.

John Greenleaf Whittier, For Righteousness' Sake.

Paul Lawrence Dunbar, We Wear the Mask.

Ralph Chaplin, Song: Solidarity Forever.

Claude Mckay, If We Must Die.

E.E. Cummings, I Sing of Olaf Glad and Big.

Pablo Neruda, Ode to Federico Garcia Lorca.

W.H. Auden, The Unknown Citizen.

Robert Hayden, Frederick Douglass.

Langston Hughes, Harlem .

Wole Soyinka, Telephone Conversation.

Ray Durem, To the Pale Poets.

peggy seeger, Song: I'm Gonna Be an Engineer.

Muriel Rukeyser, Ballad of Orange and Grape.

Sylvia Plath, Daddy.

Linda Hogan, Black Hills Survival Gathering, 1980.

Joy Harjo, The Woman Hanging from the Thirteenth Floor Window.

Sherman Alexie, The Powwow at the End of the World.

Pamela Hale, Poem for an Iraqi Child in a Forgotten News Clip.

Katha Pollit, Trying to Write a Poem Against the War.

Philip Levine, They Feed They Lion. 


Sophocles, Antigone.  

Martin Bieberman (Director) And Michael Wilson (Scriptwriter), Screenplay: Salt of the Earth. 


Henry David Thoreau, Civil Disobedience.

Harriet Jacobs, from Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl.  

Thomas S. Whitecloud, Blue Winds Dancing. 

Martin Luther King, Jr., I Have a Dream.

Varities of Protest: Paper Topics.


Alice, by Paulette Childress White.

Point of View.




Language and Tone.

Theme and Symbol.


What Is Poetry?

Kinds of Poetry.


Figurative Language.

The Sound of a Poem.

Note on Tone.

The Speaker of the Poem.

The World of the Poem.

The World and the Poem.

Appendix: Explicating a Poem.


Drama on Stage and on the Page.

Changing Stage Conventions.

Plot and Character.

Tragedy and Comedy.

Drama and Social Criticism.


A Note on Television.


Types of Nonfiction.

Strategies of Nonfiction.

Types of Literary Criticism.

Index of First Lines of Poems.

Index of Authors and Titles.

Glossary of Literary Terms.