American literature consists of the body of literature written and produced in the United States and its preceding colonies, and as a discipline of literary study involves developing an understanding of the canon of American literature as conceived within critical and academic circles, and the logic and reasoning behind its construction. The study of American literature aims to emphasize connections within the United States between literature, art, and culture, while exploring rhetorical and stylistic modes of narrative and writing technique that have formed, shaped, and developed American literary considerations. Various topics discussed within American literature include the meaning of American individualism, the relation between history and cultural mythology, the dialectic between slavery and freedom in American thought and rhetoric, the obsession with race, liberty, and equality in American social thought, and so on.
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