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American Passages: A Literary SurveyUnit IndexAmerican Passages Home
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3. Utopian Promise   

3. Utopian

•  Unit Overview
•  Using the Video
•  Authors
•  Timeline
•  Activities
- Overview Questions
- Video
- Author
- Context
- Creative Response
- PBL Projects

Activities: Author Activities

Sarah Kemble Knight - Author Questions

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  1. Comprehension: What kinds of prejudices color Knight's descriptions of the people she meets on her journey? What do her responses to people of different economic status and race reveal about the social hierarchy that structured colonial America?

  2. Context: What role, if any, does spirituality play in Knight's worldview and her understanding of her journey? When does she bring up religion? How does her Journal compare to other journals and autobiographical narratives included in this unit (for example, those of Bradford, Rowlandson, and Woolman)?

  3. Exploration: Literary critics disagree on the generic categorization of Knight's Journal. It has been read as participating in the traditions of the picaresque, mock-epic, and the captivity narrative, while it has also been cited as a foundational text in the development of American travel writing and the American comic tradition. How would you categorize the Journal? What kind of influence do you think it may have had on later American writing?

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