Samuel L. Clemens, better know as Mark Twain is one of the greatest writers in the United States and the Western World. This site provides an opportunity using primary sources to become better acquainted with Twain and his writings.
Type of Task:
Two hours plus the time to write a paper.
Americas: United States 1865-1900, Biography, Intellectual, Local/Regional, Popular Culture
A knowledge of the United States after the Civil War and about Mark Twain.
To reacquaint students with one of the United States' most talented authors by using primary sources.
Basic computer skills.
Text of Learning Exercise:
When the web site comes on screen, Click Sample this Site. Click Texts and Contents. Answer Question 1. 1. How were Mark Twain's writings published and sold?
Go back to the main menu. Click on Images. Answer Questions 2-4. 2. Explain the importance of illustrations in selling Twain's works. 3. Describe the pictures and illustrations used in Twain's books and explain what these images convey about Twain and his reputation. 4. Name the special collections held on Mark Twain at the University of Virginia.
Go back to the Main Menu. Click on Clemens as Mark Twain. Answer Questions 5-12 by clicking on each icon named in the question. 5. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in Yours Truly? 6. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in Illustrating Mark Twain? 7. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in Mark Twain Life Sized? 8. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in The Big House? 9. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain at Clemens' 70th birthday party? 10. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in The White Suit? 11. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in Reports of His Death?12. How did Clemens and the era shape Mark Twain in Your Mark Twain?
Go back to the Main Menu. Click The Big House. Take a tour of Nook Farm House and the Clemens' House and answer Questions 13 & 14. 13. How did each residence influence Mark Twain and his writings? 14. How long did Twain stay at each residence and which was his favorite?
Go back to the Main Menu. Click on Mark Twain on Stage. Answer Question 15. 15. Why did Clemens make so many public appearances?
Go back to the Main Menu. Click Marketing Twain. Answer Question 16. 16. What does Clemens say about his creation, Mark Twain?
Go back to the Main Menu. Click Mark Twain's Scrapbook. Answer Question 17. 17. Which book by Twain was the most profitable and why?
Go back to the Main Menu. There are six icons representing six of Twain's mostimportant books: Innocents Abroad, Roughing It, Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, AConnecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, and Pudd' Head Wilson. Select one book from among the six. Bring the book to the screen. In the right column is a list of items associated with the book. Click on each icon and take notes on the information. Write a paper of no more than 10 pages explaining what you learned about Twain from the book selected and the era in which Mark Twain wrote.