Justice for All: A Thematic Literary Study


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Justice for All: A Thematic Literary Study


Deposit Due at Time of Registration:
$99.50 - includes Yellowdig user license - see below

“Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely.” (Proverbs 28:5)

We often hear about concepts such as justice, fairness, and truth; but what do those words really mean? Does mankind’s view of justice differ from God’s? What is social justice? What is poetic justice? Where does our sense of justice come from? We see the theme of justice in scripture and in every literary genre throughout the world and throughout history, so it must be important!

This one-semester literature course is for students who want to think deeply and grow academically while grappling with relevant and engaging course content. Students will explore the idea of justice through a study of literature and scripture related to this theme. Students will examine what literature has to say about justice by studying genres such as novel, drama, film, short story, poetry, biography, essay, sermon, and even children’s literature. The course will rely heavily on critical thinking, class discussion, and the development of students’ own interpretations of the theme. Students will learn to support their assertions with evidence from the reading.

Students will be expected to read about 75 pages of literature each week, participate in lively discussion, and write three persuasive papers.

SPECIAL NOTE #1: Tuition includes a user license for Yellowdig, an internal communications platform for students to use within Canvas. Yellowdig promotes deeper discussion and critical thinking skills.

Please view prerequisites and required supplies below.

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Yellowdig, an internal communications platform for students to use within Canvas (included in registration)

Instructor will supply links to articles (about Ruby Bridges, Jim Elliot and Nate Saint, Cassie Bernall, and the 1927 Sacco-Vanzetti case), a sermon (George Whitefield’s “Persecution Every Christian’s Lot”), an interview (about Ruby Bridges), poetry (“Justice Denied in Massachusetts”), and a few short works (“Robin Hood Aids a Sorrowful Knight” and “The Necklace”), etc.

Instructor will supply links to articles, interviews, poetry, etc. Each student will need a copy of the Bible (both Old and New Testament, any translation) as well as the following books. Though ISBNs are provided, other editions are fine as long as they are the full, unabridged works.

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (ISBN-13: 978-0486406510) – novel

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (ISBN-13: 978-0060935467) – novel

The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles (ISBN-13: 978-0439472265) – children’s book

Antigone by Sophocles, translated by Robert Fitzgerald (ISBN-13: 978-0156027649) – play – (This ISBN is for The Oedipus Cycle, a collection of three plays including Antigone. If you can find a copy of just Antigone that’s translated by Fitzgerald, that’s fine.)

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot (ISBN-10: 9781400052189) – nonfiction

Finally, students will need access to the 1957 film 12 Angry Men (available on various streaming services.).

Dawn Burnette is truly excited to be part of the Excelsior family as an English teacher! Dawn holds a B.A. in English Education/Journalism from Lenoir-Rhyne University and an M.A. in English Education from Georgia State University. She has also earned National Board Certification and gifted endorsement. While teaching English at a public high school for 15 years, Dawn served as English department chair, coached a nationally ranked dance team, and won a few local, state, and national teaching awards. Dawn loves sharing her passion for reading and writing, and she works tirelessly to help students reach their academic potential and to glorify God in all pursuits. Soli Deo Gloria!

When it was time for their children to start school, Dawn and her husband Rod moved the family from an Atlanta suburb to the North Georgia mountains, acquired way too many animals, and spent the next 12 years homeschooling. Their daughter Ansley recently graduated from Samford University with a double major in English and Theatre and works at Sight & Sound in Pennsylvania, and their son Beck is a Communication major on a golf scholarship at Lee University.

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