Unit Title: Literature Skills Review (with Elie Wiesel’s Night)
Grade Level: 10 (Honors)
Strands: Text Study
The primary goal of this unit is to review previously taught text analysis skills and to expand on these skills by
emphasizing critical approaches. Week one will involve a review of basic literary terminology and a traditional
look at the elements that make up Elie Wiesel’s Night (e.g., plot, characterization, setting, theme). By comparing
their ideas with other students, students will recognize that it is often easy to reach consensus on these basic
literary traits. Week two will involve an introduction to literary criticism and initial attempts at applying criticism
to Night. Students will recognize that critical approaches are limitless, that small portions of a text can lead to
productive literary criticism, that freshness of thought is valuable, and that any conclusions are highly debatable.
The choice of Elie Wiesel’s Night serves two purposes. During the first week, it provides a text that is fairly easy
to read for English 10 Honors students yet complex enough to make simple literary analysis productive. During
the second week, it provides a text that doesn’t seem to encourage the use of various critical approaches. Students
will be required to force critical approaches upon Night in ways that seem awkward. Night will serve as a good
transition to Modernism and Postmodernism because it seems to defy criticism because its theme is clear while
Postmodern texts defy criticism for philosophical reasons.
The summative evaluation will include three parts: 1. Definitions and/or examples of various literary terminology,
2. Comprehension questions related to Night, and 3. Practice applying a critical approach to Night and supporting
a conclusion with specific evidence
Which literary elements or traits are contained in almost every fiction (or fictionalized) text?
Which literary elements or traits might be found in a