by Lolly Bowean
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
The Negro Speaks of Rivers
- Langston Hughes
The speaker in this famous Langston Hughes poem uses symbolism to explain the connection they feel between their ancestry and identity.Pair “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” with “The Unspoken History Behind a Surname” and ask students to discuss how both speakers feel connected to their ancestors. How does Langston Hughes use the imagery of a river to show how connected the speaker feels to their ancestry? How does Lolly Bowean use her surname to feel connected to her relatives? How are the experiences of their ancestors important to the speakers’ identities?
Hello, My Name Is ______
- Jason Kim
In the personal account “Hello, My Name Is _______,” Jason Kim discusses accepting his Korean American identity and his experiences assimilating into American culture.Pair “Hello, My Name is _____” with “The Unspoken History Behind a Surname” and ask students to discuss the importance of names in the two texts. How does Jason Kim’s reason for changing his name compare to Lolly Bowean’s reason for keeping her name? How do both texts explore the connection between one’s name and identity?