The Nature of American Literature Analytical Essay by write123

The Nature of American Literature
An examination of American literature.
# 105736 | 1,271 words | 5 sources | APA | 2008 | US
Published on Jul 16, 2008 in Literature (American) , Literature (Comparative Literature)

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This paper examines the nature of American literature. The paper explains that American literature, like many other nationalistic literary bodies has had an evolution that marks changing attitudes with regard to what is to be included in the voice of literature. The paper then looks at how the representation of both women and African-American writers is not the only body of inclusion, as contemporary movements have made significant strides toward the inclusion of almost every immigrant group into the canon of American literature and into the body of publishing in general in history and contemporary works. The paper also points out that the defining characteristics of what qualifies as American Literature is simply that it is a written form, poetry, prose or drama that conveys any point of view of the American experience of growth and change. The writer states that frequently some of the most fundamentally expressive forms of American literature are immigrant literature that explores the real and fictional development of the self, from an immigrant outsider to someone who feels as if they are an American, regardless of the outside view of themselves as a foreigner. The paper concludes that American literature should continue to be inclusive and representative of personal nationalistic growth, as a standard bearer for other forms of nationalistic literature.

From the Paper:

"In all representations of immigrant literature there is a clear sense that at almost any given time in America there was a dominant or subjugated immigrant group that was struggling to be accepted by those who had immigrated one, two or three generations before them. America is a nation of immigrants and American literature is finally beginning to express this, without as much of the exclusionary literary academic influences. The transition of an immigrant into and "American" in the self is frequently one of the most important and influential expression of literature, from Latino American literature, to Asian American immigrant expressions."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Einhorn, L. J. (2000). Introduction. In The Native American Oral Tradition: Voices of the Spirit and Soul (pp. 1-10). Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.
  • Jung, Y. (2004). The New Americanist Intervention into the Canon. American Studies International, 42(2-3), 213.
  • Levine, L. W. (1996). The Opening of the American Mind: Canons, Culture, and History. Boston: Beacon Press.
  • McQuade, D. Atwan, R. Banta, M. Kaplan, J. Minter, D. Stepto, R. (1998) Harper American Literature, Single Volume Edition (3rd Edition) New York: Longman.
  • Zierler, W. (1999). 1 In(ter)dependent Selves: Mary Antin, Elizabeth Stern, and Jewish Immigrant Women's Autobiography. In The Immigrant Experience in North American Literature: Carving out a Niche, Payant, K. B. & Rose, T. (Eds.) (pp. 1-13). Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

The Nature of American Literature (2008, July 16) Retrieved June 30, 2022, from

MLA Format

"The Nature of American Literature" 16 July 2008. Web. 30 June. 2022. <>