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									                           AP Literature & Composition
                       Summer Reading & Writing Assignments
                           “To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting.”
                                               ~ Edmund Burke ~

Overview
Advanced Placement Literature and Composition is a challenging course for students who love to read literature
and write thoughtfully about these works. In preparation for this rigorous course, all students enrolled in the
Advanced Placement Literature & Composition course are required to complete summer reading and writing
assignments. The summer reading and writing program is an important feature of the AP Literature program as
it serves three functions: 1) it keeps students active as readers, broadening their appreciation of well-written
literature, and 2) it keeps students active as writers, allowing them to finely tune their craft, and 3) it helps
students to prepare for the AP Literature exam in May by introducing students to literature that is often
suggested on the essay portion of the exam.

How to Read Literature Like a Professor Assignment
Thomas Foster knows how to “read literature like a professor” because he is indeed a professor of English at the
University of Michigan in Flint. In this text, Foster explains how to read literary works more deeply. Focusing
on theme, symbolism, allusions, intertextuality and other literary devices, Foster gives his reader tips on how to
be a more analytical reader, an essential skill in AP Literature. For this portion of your summer assignment,
you will do a close reading of Foster’s text; it is essential that you read this text closely because not only will it
help you complete the rest of your summer reading assignments, but it will also provide you with the
framework for our study of literary texts throughout the 2012-2013 academic school year. It is important that
you complete this assignment first, as you will need to utilize this text in order to successfully complete the rest
of the summer assignments.

Summer Reading Assignments
For this assignment, you must closely read ONE of the novels below. These novels maybe found at the library,
your local bookstore, or are available for download on your e-book.

               The Awakening – Kate Chopin
               The Road – Cormac McCarthy
               One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
               A Thousand Splendid Suns – Khaled Hosseini
               On the Road – Jack Kerouac
               Going After Cacciato - Tim O’Brien
               Frankenstein – Marry Shelly
               Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
               Snow Falling on Cedars – David Guterson
               Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
               Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
               Picture of Dorian Gray – Oscar Wilde

Writing Assignments
After reading your selected novel, you will write a 2-3 page critical analysis of the work, using one of the
techniques that Foster details in How to Read Literature Like a Professor. Your essay must include a strong,
arguable thesis, supported by strong textual evidence and support, be at least 4-5 paragraphs in length (including
an introduction and conclusion), and conform to MLA style guidelines.
** Please note that in the chapter titled “A Case Study” of HTRLLAP, Foster includes a great literary analysis
essay for your reference.
After reading Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, for instance, you may have noted that he uses many biblical
allusions to enhance the meaning of his work. Drawing on Chapters 7, 14, 18 and others in HTRLLAP, you
could construct an essay in which you make an argument about the significance, or deeper meaning, of these
allusions.

Or, perhaps, after reading Chopin’s The Awakening, you may have noticed that water is an important symbol in
the novel. Drawing upon Chapter 12 in HTRLLAP, you could write an essay in which you explore the meaning
of this symbolism.

Meanwhile, Chapter 1 of HTRLLAP is highly applicable to Jack Kerouac’s novel On the Road. In the novel, the
main character, Sal Paradise, crisscrosses America on an epic journey. But what is the greater meaning of this
journey? Write an essay in which you explore this question.

Due Date
You must have your summer reading essays completed for the first day of school in order to receive full credit
for this assignment (late essays will be penalized a letter grade for each day the assignment is late and may
result in your removal from AP Literature). Extra credit will be offered to those students who email the
assignment before Monday, August 20 to my email address: hartland.aplit@yahoo.com.

If you have any questions over the summer, please do not hesitate to contact me at my email address listed
above.

Have a wonderful summer, and happy reading!

Miss Tyer (Mrs. Hoerauf)

								
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