What topics will I learn about in English 4?

English 4 introduces students to the wealth, breadth and beauty of English literature by contextualizing some of Britain’s works within the question “How does one live well in a fallen world?” as well as the question “How does literature communicate about the nature of the world in both a true and beautiful way?” The range of books shows the existence of the fallen world, the reality of grace, the depravity of man, and the need for virtue within different time periods.

The course begins by introducing students to the Inklings, a group of devoted Christians living and writing in the twentieth century. Using the Inklings as a backdrop, the course then moves chronologically through the major movements in British literature: Old English, medieval, early-modern, seventeenth-century, Romantic, Victorian, modern and contemporary literature. It also does genre work on the Shakespearian play, the novel, essays, children’s literature, and poetry throughout the centuries. 

Giving students the tools to critically engage texts on their own is an essential motivator behind the assignments in this curriculum. As such, students will learn to generate interesting theses and questions, write defensible argumentative essays, and turn argumentative essays into compelling verbal presentations. 

The course focuses heavily on reading, argumentative writing, poetry immersion, creative opportunities, and discussion to allow students the freedom to engage the texts.