The readings of English 101 class

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Readings for English 101

Readings for English 101 should come from traditional sources rather than from modern ones. The course's goal is to expose students to a broad range of readings that will enhance their ability to write and appreciate literature. These goals will be easier to accomplish with the aid of classic texts. It is evident from reading historical literary works that the majority of them are full of literary devices that will aid pupils in improving their language skills. In addition, the traditional sources aid students in comprehending the past of their nation and notable leaders. This is a crucial component of learning that cannot be attained by focusing only on modern literary studies. Most importantly, class readings have been tested by literary critics over several years and proven worthy to be used in English and literature classes.

The Value of Classic Sources

The old sources from the 17th to 20th centuries have been subjected to the test of time and proven useful. Therefore, when selecting the texts to use in the English 101 class, it would be easy to get ideal sources from the classical era. For example, when Dale Carnegie wrote the book titled How to Win Friends and Influence People in 1936, few people from that time bothered to read and review the book. Carnegie had not written any bestseller before, thus, it was not easy for people to pay attention to his book. However, after many years, people saw the value of his book. The book made an impact in people's lives and became one of the best books in the world. Consequently, it is better to use a widely reviewed book for the class as opposed to a new text written in the 21st century.

Rich History from Primary Sources

In addition, the classic readings are rich in history direct from the primary sources. During the class, students read speeches and autobiographies written by famous leaders such as Benjamin Franklin and Martin Luther King Jr. Students get valuable historical information from such texts that cannot be found in the modern works of literature. For instance, we all know that slavery was a grotesque practice that featured in the history of the United States. However, the story of Frederick Douglass, Narrative of life of Frederick Douglass, offers an extremely vivid description of servitude. Young students who read the book appreciate the decision to abolish slavery and the need to uphold racial cohesion across the country.

The Importance of Classic Literature

Nonetheless, it may also be imperative to consider contemporary sources because they reflect the modern use of English. Language evolves and students need to understand the current approach to writing as opposed to learning using classic sources. However, that is not a valid argument to propose the use of contemporary readings because students can still perfect their writing skills using the knowledge derived from classic literature. In fact, those are the best types of texts to use in class because they reflect the ideal use of English.


In conclusion, English 101 class should continue using classic readings as sources. As noted, the old texts have been subjected to critical review and found appropriate to be used in a language class. More so, students gain a lot of knowledge by reading the classical literatures. Since they live in the 21sts century, they can rely on the digital devices to learn about their current world but the only way to understand history and the lives of great leaders is to read classic sources.

Works Cited

Carnegie, Dale. How to Win Friends and Influence People. 1937

Douglass, Frederick. Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass. The Anti-Slavery Office, No. 25 Cornhill, 1845

June 19, 2023

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