I am teaching analysis of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s famous essay “Self-Reliance,” and I want to focus on the theme of success by looking at the many sentences in the essay which explore this theme in relation to the individual. At the beginning of the unit I would use the Maya Angelou conversation about success to frame a discussion about how people relate to society’s definition of success vs how they could define it for themselves. Sentences from Emerson will further that ongoing conversation.
Level: Secondary English/Language Arts
Subject Area: American Literature