Teacher Bulletin | Volume 11

Appropriate for grades 9, 10, 11, 12

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New England’s Women Writers

The study of American literature is an ever-expanding experience. In the past 30 years alone, two whole units have been added to the typical anthology used in high schools- -and no additional school days. As a result, some authors have been squeezed out in favor of more modern and contemporary writers. This has often, but not exclusively, meant that women writers, especially those considered too “cozy” or “moral” for public education, are no longer taught. And fewer and fewer of our children even know their names, let alone their works.

This unit takes a look at some of the writing that has come from New England’s women writers. Two PowerPoint presentations give a detailed overview of more than a dozen of the key writers of the region, but the bulk of the unit focuses on four of the writers no longer—or only briefly—found in the anthologies plus one that has never been listed in the table of contents, but who is foundational to the Seventh-day Adventist church: Ellen White. The unit can be taught any way you wish—as a whole, or in parts inserted into the fabric of the anthology wherever they fit best. The main goal is to bring this literature back on the radar of our young people.