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These Are a Few of My Favorite Things: African American Short Stories in the Jazz Tradition

Author: Sydney Hunt Coffin


University City High School

Year: 2012

Seminar: "But Mostly I Lie A Lot" - The African American Short Story in the 21st Century

Grade Level: 9-12

Keywords: African American short stories, Jazz, short stories

School Subject(s): Arts, English, Literature, Music, Social Studies

Literacy and a highly flexible attention span are irreplaceable assets in any modern society, and in the society of the public, or even private high school, there are many students who face learning, as well as clinical, challenges as they move ahead in their goal of being educated and prepared for the workplace of the world, in addition to being enriched by the ideas, experiences and fulfillment of reading and writing literature. In the culture of the reading world, there has been a rise and fall in interest with longer reading passages, and we have adapted to shorter and briefer snippets of dense, richly complex reading, while maintaining an ability to produce mass quantities of it.

This unit attempts to narrow the search for immediate gratification to a selection of specific short stories by African Americans, while at the same time leaving plenty of room for the exploration of a much greater list of texts at the reader’s or teacher’s discretion. Ultimately, this is a unit devoted to Jazz music and its traditions, possibilities, and beauty, with the narrow focus of how it takes its shape in the written short story.

Download Unit: TIP-Unit-final-draft_Coffin.pdf

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