American Literature: Romanticism
Student Final Exam Samples 2013

final exam assignment

Mid-length essay (4-6 paragraphs): Review & prioritize your learning in American Romanticism.

Meryl Bazaman, Organizational Lessons for a Prospective Educator

Norbert Hill, American Platform for the Modern Day Romantic

Matt Martin, My Own Romantic Journey

Rachel Risinger, Informing the Exercise of Reading through Correspondence

Jennifer Tapp, What I Learned . . .

Hannah Wells, Reflections of an Anglophile

Carlos Zelaya, Elements of Romanticism in the Park

Long Essay Questions

1.  Why do “desire and loss” re-appear so frequently in American Romantic texts, both as driving forces in the “romance” narrative and as indexes for Romantic values?

Sarah McCall DeLaRosa, The Desire and Loss Cycle in American Romanticism and Beyond

James Simpson, On Desire and Loss

Jeanette Smith, The Drama of Desire and Loss in American Romanticism

Daniel B. Stuart, Romanticism: A Case For The Subjective

Kristine Vermillion, Romance is "Desire and Loss"

2. How has American Romanticism continued or changed in post-Romantic American literature?—that is, literature after the Civil War and American Renaissance of the pre-Civil War generation of the1820s-1860s? Discuss Romanticism with Realism (+- Local Color) and Modernism.

Sarah McCall DeLaRosa, Surviving traditions of American Romanticism

3. Historically, Romanticism . . . is mostly associated with European literary traditions and cultural values. . . . In America and esp. the USA, though, Romanticism must adapt to a multi-racial and multicultural nation involving a dominant culture and distinct minority cultures.

Meryl Bazaman, Nostalgia and Race in Romanticism

4. Citing at least three authors, review and evaluate some varieties of the Gothic encountered this semester. Why does the Gothic recur so frequently in American literature or beyond? Why is it so adaptable to different environments, and what different purposes may it serve? What are some possible theological, intellectual, and cultural sources, limitations, and biases?

Matt Martin, The Gothic's Maze of Origins

Daniel B. Stuart, Distortion of the Commonplace: A Gothic View

5. Review and defend Romantic Poetry as an essential medium for American Romanticism, explicating 2-3 poems (one of which may be outside our course readings).

Kristine Vermillion, Contemplating Fathers

Hannah Wells, Romantic Poetry: Voices of Rebellion