ENGL 1800 American Ethnic Literatures

Instructor Contact:

Matt Tettleton, Instructor
Email: matthew.tettleton@colorado.edu

About the Course:

This course is designed to introduce significant literary works by writers working from ethnic American literary traditions, with special emphasis on Native American, African American, and Latinx traditions. We explore how ethnic literatures express cultural viewpoints that are central to broader notions of American identity. We discover how writers express connection to people and places on the American continents, both before and after “America” became shorthand for the United States of America.


By the end of the course, successful students will be able to:

  • analyze themes, tropes, trends, motifs, styles, and literary techniques of literary texts
  • understand cultural viewpoints as expressed in fiction and nonfiction
  • describe the literary contributions made to American literature and culture by writers from ethnic American literary traditions
  • articulate interpretations of literary texts and their engagements with issues of race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexuality, and class

Required Texts:

Readings may include fiction, poetry, and drama from writers from Gloria Anzaldúa, Rudolfo Anaya, William Apess, James Baldwin, Sandra Cisneros, Ralph Ellison, Eduardo Galeano, Rodolfo Gonzales, Joy Harjo, LeAnne Howe, Langston Hughes, Nella Larsen, Gabriel García Márquez, N. Scott Momaday, Toni Morrison, Leslie Marmon Silko, James Welch, August Wilson, and Zitkala-Sa, and others.

Grading (out of 100 points):

Reading Quizzes 15%
Discussion Posts 15%
Skills Worksheets 15%
Perusall Annotation Assignments 10%
Close Reading Essay 15%
Literary Analysis Essay 20%
Creative Adaptation Project 10%
Total 100%

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Monday – Friday
8:00am to 5:00pm


We are located at the corner of University Avenue and 15th Street in a white brick building.


1505 University Avenue
University of Colorado Boulder
178 UCB
Boulder, Colorado