World Literature (English 5) is the fifth volume of the Excellence in Literature curriculum.
What does World Literature cover?
World Literature is a college-preparatory literature and composition course. Focus works, including novels, short stories, poems, and drama, have been selected for literary quality, and for their place in the historical development of the literature of Western Civilization. Context readings provide background information about the author, the historical period, and the literary and artistic context of the focus work.
Students will get acquainted with literary masterpieces by authors from Ancient Greece and Rome, as well as Spain, France, Germany, Russia, and Scandinavia. They will hone literary analysis skills through structured writing assignments including essays, approach papers, and other types of writing.
By the end of the World Literature course, students will:
—Possess a broad knowledge of the history and development of major works of Western Civilization.
—Have specific understanding of selected representative texts by major authors studied.
—Have a general understanding of the historical and cultural contexts of the works.
—Be able to analyze literary texts and present thoughtfully developed ideas in writing.
—Demonstrate competence in essay organization, style, and mechanics.
What does World Literature offer?
It is self-directed: Like all the volumes of the Excellence in Literature curriculum, World Literature is written mostly to the student. The book begins by introducing the purpose and focus of the curriculum, then go on to provide information that will be useful as students work through the modules, including chapters on How to Read a Book and How to Write an Essay, as well as Discerning Worldview through Literary Periods.
Formats and Models: This chapter provides detailed instructions for each type of paper, along with a student-written model so parents and students can see exactly what is expected.
Honors: In the listing below, the highlighted book is the focus text, and the honors book is optional additional reading for students who want to earn an honors grade or prepare for a CLEP. A brief chapter in each book provides instructions for the additional writing that will round out the honors grade.
Following the nine modules that outline readings and a week-by-week lesson plan for each of the classic works being studied, you will find reference resources, including instructions for evaluation, reproducible rubric and assignment sheets, and more. You can see an annotated listing of each of the introductory and reference chapters at the “What is included in Excellence in Literature” post. Each book below is linked to edition I prefer at Amazon. These are affiliate links, of course — that means I get a few cents from each book purchase, but it doesn’t change your cost at all.
“Students completing these courses should be miles ahead of most of their high school contemporaries in their ability to read and analyze literature at a sophisticated level.
The challenging writing assignments also promise to develop student skills in composition to a high level.”
Module 1: The Odyssey by Homer
Honors: The Iliad by Homer
Module 2: Antigone by Sophocles
The Burial at Thebes: A Verson of Sophocles’ Antigone by Seamus Heaney
Honors: Oedipus Rex by Sophocles (included in the same volume as Antigone)
Module 3: The Aeneid by Virgil
Honors: Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans by Plutarch
Module 4: Divine Comedy: Inferno by Dante
Honors: Paradiso and/or Purgatorio by Dante
OR Confessions by Augustine of Hippo
Module 5: Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
Honors: The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens
Module 6: Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Honors: The Hunchback of Notre-Dame by Victor Hugo
OR Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville
Module 7: The Portable Nineteenth Century Russian Reader edited by George Gibian
Honors: The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Module 8: Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life by C.S. Lewis
Visit my blog to read about how I chose the literature for Excellence in Literature. This link will open in a new tab, so you don’t have to worry about losing your place here.
Best value! Get the print book and ebook together!
You and your student will have the print book for reference and evaluation, but the student will be able to view the modules online, and click links (on most computers) to the context resources, rather than typing out the URLs.
Click each title below for a detailed description of the study guide.
Introduction to Literature (English 1)
Literature and Composition (English 2)
American Literature (English 3)
British Literature (English 4)
World Literature (English 5)
The Complete Curriculum: Literature and Writing for Grades 8-12
Handbook for Writers