Essential Questions, Learning Goals, & Standards

Below you will find a list of essential questions, learning goals, and Common Core State Standards that are addressed in the unit.


Essential Questions

  1. How has the violent history of the Caribbean influenced its contemporary representation in art and literature?
  2. How do poets use literary techniques such as metaphor, imagery, diction, and allusion to convey a message or theme?
  3. To what literary tradition does Caribbean literature belong? Why does this matter?


Learning Goals

  1. Analyze and annotate texts for literary devices & techniques
  2. Participate in small group and large group seminar discussions on individual poems and overarching themes between several poems
  3. Acquire knowledge of Caribbean history and culture
  4. Apply knowledge of Caribbean history and culture to understanding poetry and art from the region
  5. Review and reinforce knowledge of literary techniques such as metaphor, imagery, diction, and allusion among others


CC State Standards Addressed

Analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States, drawing on a wide reading of world literature.

Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.

Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9-10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.

Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.


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How to cite these resources: “’Expanding the Atlantic’ for World Literature Classrooms,” written and designed by Savannah Windham, The Black Atlantic Pages, The Black Atlantic Blog, Duke University, (accessed on (date)). – See more at:

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