Historical Context

When students employ topical knowledge of history in their study of literature, they may do much more than remember dates, events, and historical figures in relation to a text. They may apply what they know about a historical period to better understand the attitudes and relationships in a work of literature. Students learn to think historically, considering different explanations for events, or cause and effect relationships in tracing a sequence of events. For example in reading Steinbeck’s novels, students may draw on what they know about the historical period of The Great Depression. Hemingway’s “Farewell To Arms” may evoke a historical picture of Europe embroiled in World War I. Literature offers an opportunity to apply historical knowledge in the context of a work. Students understand that both literary and historical accounts of an event or character may differ significantly, and that one may illuminate the other.


Provided by: Mometrix Test Preparation

Last updated: 12/18/2017
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