Select Bibliography American Literature And Literature About America

A representative selection of novels, short stories, poems, memoirs, travelogues, plays and essays by American writers. The works below were selected mainly for their Americana nature or their insight into American life, society or culture. Two non-American authors are included – the travelogues of Charles Dickens and Alexis de Tocqueville – because of their significance.

This list does not include selections of speeches, pamphlets, folklore, religious literature or sermons, children’s literature, pop fiction or other genre literature such as westerns, detective, mystery, science fiction, horror or fantasy literature although many of these themes are represented in the works below (the distinction between genre literature and themed literature is admittedly sometimes a very subjective judgment).

  1. Of Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford
  2. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
  3. Notes on the State of Virginia by Thomas Jefferson
  4. The Short Stories of Washington Irving
  5. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  6. The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  7. The Short Stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne
  8. Essays by Ralph Waldo Emerson
  9. Walden by Henry David Thoreau
  10. Essays by Henry David Thoreau
  11. Poems by Edgar Allen Poe
  12. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  13. Omoo: A Narrative of Adventures in the South Seas by Herman Melville
  14. The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade by Herman Melville
  15. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
  16. Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  17. American Notes by Charles Dickens
  18. Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville
  19. The Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant
  20. Poems by Emily Dickinson
  21. Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
  22. Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  23. Roughing It by Mark Twain
  24. The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain
  25. Life on the Mississippi by Mark Twain
  26. The Short Stories by Mark Twain
  27. Letters from the Earth by Mark Twain
  28. Poems of John Greenleaf Whittier
  29. Maggie: A Girl of the Streets by Stephen Crane
  30. The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane
  31. The Open Boat and Other Tales of Adventure by Stephen Crane
  32. Suffrage Songs and Verses by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
  33. The Short Stories of Charlotte Perkins Gilman
  34. Poems by Robert Frost
  35. Poems by T.S. Elliot
  36. The Great Gasby by F Scott Fitzgerald
  37. The Beautiful and Damned by F Scott Fitzgerald
  38. The Short Stories by F Scott Fitzgerald
    (Flappers and Philosophers, Tales of the Jazz Age, All the Sad Young Men are collection titles)
  39. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  40. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  41. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  42. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  43. Wise Blood by Mary Flannery O’Connor
  44. The Violent Bear It Away by Mary Flannery O’Connor
  45. The Short Stories of Mary Flannery O’Connor
  46. Poems by Sylvia Plath
  47. O Pioneers! by Willa Cather
  48. The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather
  49. My Ántonia by Willa Cather
  50. One of Ours by Willa Cather
  51. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
  52. Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser
  53. A River Runs Through It and Other Stories by Norman Maclean
  54. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway
  55. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
  56. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway
  57. The Garden of Eden by Ernest Hemingway
  58. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  59. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
  60. Light in August by William Faulkner
  61. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner
  62. The Reivers by William Faulkner
  63. Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis
  64. Elmer Gantry by Sinclair Lewis
  65. The Short Stories of Sinclair Lewis
  66. The Freedom Writers Diary by Erin Gruwell
  67. Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo
  68. The Light in the Forest by Conrad Richter
  69. A Gathering of Old Men by Ernest J. Gaines
  70. Our Town by Thornton Wilder
  71. The Skin of Our Teeth by Thornton Wilder
  72. The Matchmaker by Thornton Wilder
  73. Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin
  74. The Red Pony by John Steinbeck
  75. Tortilla Flat by John Steinbeck
  76. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
  77. The Long Valley by John Steinbeck
  78. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  79. Cannery Row by John Steinbeck
  80. Sea of Cortez: A Leisurely Journal of Travel and Research by John Steinbeck
  81. East of Eden by John Steinbeck
  82. Once There Was A War by John Steinbeck
  83. The Winter of Our Discontent by John Steinbeck
  84. Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck
  85. America and Americans by John Steinbeck
  86. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
  87. The Call of the Wild by Jack London
  88. White Fang by Jack London
  89. The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper
  90. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
  91. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
  92. Shadow and Act by Ralph Ellison
  93. The Rabbit Novels by John Updike
  94. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
  95. The Brass Check by Upton Sinclair
  96. All God’s Chillun Got Wings by Eugene O’Neill
  97. Desire Under the Elms by Eugene O’Neill
  98. Long Day’s Journey Into Night by Eugene O’Neill
  99. Strange Interlude by Eugene O’Neill
  100. A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams
  101. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams
  102. In the Bar of a Tokyo Hotel by Tennessee Williams
  103. The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore by Tennessee Williams
  104. Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
  105. All My Sons by Arthur Miller
  106. The Crucible by Arthur Miller
  107. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  108. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  109. Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger
  110. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  111. The Souls of Black Folk by W. E. B. Du Bois
  112. John Brown: A Biography by W. E. B. Du Bois
  113. Darkwater: Voices From Within the Veil by W. E. B. Du Bois
  114. A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry
  115. The Town and the City by Jack Kerouac
  116. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
  117. Doctor Sax by Jack Kerouac
  118. The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac
  119. Mexico City Blues by Jack Kerouac
  120. The Subterraneans by Jack Kerouac
  121. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave by Frederick Douglass
  122. One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
  123. In Cold Blood: A True Account of a Multiple Murder and Its Consequences by Truman Capote
  124. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
  125. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  126. Of Time and the River by Thomas Wolfe
  127. The Lost Boy by Thomas Wolfe
  128. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
  129. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  130. Up from Slavery by Booker T. Washington