CSULA Department of English | Comprehensive Examination Reading Lists

American Literature: 1914-present

Period Reading List for Part One Exam

  1. Cather, My Antonia

  2. Frost, Selected Poems

  3. Eliot, Selected Poems and “Tradition and the Individual Talent, “Hamlet,” and the “The Metaphysical Poets” from Selected Prose

  4. Pound, Stevens, Williams, Moore (selections from the Norton’s Anthology, volume D)

  5. O’Neill, Long Day’s Journey into Night and Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

  6. Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

  7. Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises

  8. Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

  9. Steinbeck, Grapes of Wrath

  10. Wright, Native Son

  11. Ellison, Invisible Man

  12. Lowell, Plath, and Rich (selections from the Norton’s Anthology, volume E)

  13. O’Connor, A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories

  14. Nabokov, “Terror,” “Terra Incognita,” “Spring in Fialta,” “Mademoiselle O,” “That in Aleppo Once,” “Cloud, Castle, Lake,” and “Scenes from the Life of a Double Monster” in The Stories of Vladimir Nabokov.

  15. Bellow, Herzog

  16. Morrison, Beloved and Playing in the Dark (essay)

  17. Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49

  18. DeLillo, White Noise

  19. Lahiri, Interpreter of Maladies

Selected Text for Part Two Exam

The next time the comprehensive examination in this period is offered, the Part Two text will be

Cather, My Antonia.