To Kill A Mockingbird


Novel Final Exam:

  • Thursday, 4/10 (Period 6)
  • Wednesday, 4/9 (Period 3)

Essay Questions:

  • Due Thursday, 4/10 (Period 6 at the beginning of the period!)
  • Due Wednesday, 4/9 (Period 3 at the beginning of the period!)
  1. Racism: “I’m simply defending a Negro—his name’s Tom Robinson” (100). With these words Atticus informs Scout of his life-altering task of standing up to the prejudice and racism that pervades the sleepy southern town that was Maycomb, Alabama in the 1930’s. Discuss the effects of racism on Maycomb citizens such as Tom and Helen Robinson, Calpurnia, Scout, Jem, Dill, or Mayella Ewell. Is this a challenging novel that promotes Civil Rights or does it accept the racism and segregation of the time period?
  2. Empathy: According to Atticus, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it” (39). How is empathy toward others demonstrated or learned by characters such as Atticus, Scout, Jem, Dill, or Miss Maudie?
  3. Courage: Atticus says to Jem that he wants his son “to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand” (149). How is courage defined in this novel? What character(s) best exemplify courage? Why? What point does Harper Lee want to make about courage through her use of these characters?
  4. Loss of Innocence: With age and experience come knowledge, the realization of harsh realities, and finally wisdom and understanding. Trace the narrator’s journey from innocence to understanding in a thoughtful essay.

To download the essay handout and criteria/requirement, click here.

Helpful Resources:

AP Literature Short Stories


Have each section’s reading completed by the due dates marked in parentheses. Expect quizzes, discussions and writing assignments.


  1. W.G.: The World’s Greatest Short Stories (Ed. J. Daley)
  2. Perrine’s: Perrine’s Literature: Structure, Sound and Sense (Eds. T. Arp & G. Johnson)

A. Nineteenth Century American Literature: The Gothic and Romanticism (Thurs. 3/27)

  • Nathaniel Hawthorne, “Young Goodman Brown” (Perrine’s, 299-310) – U.S.
  • Edgar Allen Poe, “The Cask of the Amontillado” (Perrine’s, 611-616) – U.S.
  • Herman Melville, “Bartleby the Scrivener” (WG, 1-30 or Perrine’s, 579-610) – U.S.

B. The Golden Age of Russian Literature: Exploring Morality (Tuesday, 4/1)

  • Leo Tolstoy, “The Death of Ivan Ilyich” (WG, 38-84) – Russia
  • Anton Chekhov, “The Lady with the Toy Dog” (WG, 136-149) – Russia

C. Women In Literature: Notions of Feminism, Race and Sexuality (Thursday, 4/3)

  • Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper” (WG, 113-126) – U.S.
  • Virginia Woolf, “The Mark on the Wall” (WG, 192-197) – England
  • Zora Neal Hurston, “The Gilded Six-Bits” (Perrine’s, 564-574) – U.S.
  • Alice Walker, “Everyday Use” (Perrine’s, 166-174) – U.S.
  • Toni Cade Bambara, “The Lesson” (Perrine’s, 195-201) – U.S.

D. Modernist Literature: Breaking with Tradition (Tuesday, 4/8)

  • D. H. Lawrence, “Prussian” (WG, 162-179) – England
  • James Joyce, “Araby” (WG, 180-184) – Ireland
  • Franz Kafka, “A Hunger Artist” (WG, 198-205) – Czechoslovakia
  • Ernest Hemingway, “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” (WG, 222-225) – U.S.
  • Ernest Hemingway, “Hills Like White Elephants” (Perrine’s, 268-272) – U.S.
  • F. Scott Fitzgerald, “A New Leaf” (Perrine’s, 420-433) – U.S.

E. Contemporary Literature: Postmodernism and Post-colonialism (Thursday, 4/10)

  • Chinua Achebe, “Civil Peace” (Perrine’s, 511-515) – Nigeria
  • John Updike, “A & P” (WG, 230 and Perrine’s, 619-624) – U.S.
  • Gabriel García Márquez, “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” (Perrine’s, 327-332) – Columbia
  • Ha Jin, “A Contract” (Perrine’s, 575-578) – U.S.
  • Joyce Carol Oates, “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” (Perrine’s, 311-326) – U.S.
  • Jorge Luis Borges, “Borges and I” (WG, 236) – Argentina


AP Lit: Essay on Thoreau’s Walden and Emerson’s “Self-Reliance”


Essay Writing Prompt: Draw a connection between the following two texts: Emerson’s “Self-Reliance” and Thoreau’s Walden.  How is “Self-Reliance” a guide to Thoreau’s personal and political choices at Walden Pond?  Do Thoreau and Emerson’s beliefs align?  Back up your argument with specific textual details, cited in MLA Format.  Include textual analysis and literary techniques that the authors use in their texts.

Essay Rough Draft due Friday, 3/21!

AP English Lit Winter Break Assignment

ap lit novels

All 12th Grade AP Lit students need to post comments here over the break about their chosen novel: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, My AntoniaBless Me, Ultimathe Kite Runner, or Slaughterhouse Five.

  1. You must post at least one original comment (at least a paragraph in response to the novel). **Make sure to specify which novel you’re referring to.
  2. You must also comment in response to another student’s post about the same book.
  3. Use this as a place to ask questions, share online resources or seek for clarification about the book.

Keep comments, academic appropriate and book-related. Mr. Nittle reserves the right to delete any off-topic or inappropriate comments.

All comments are due Friday, 1/17/14!

For the writing assignment related to the book, click to download the file: AP Lit Winter Break Assignment.