High School Reading Lesson - 11th Grade

The 11th grade reading plan includes books focused on the 20th century's political and cultural themes. Be sure to visit the other high school lesson plans for more ideas. Remember this site's Search Feature is great for finding any book for high school and college readers. Click on the title for more details about each book.


Roots of American Order by Russell Kirk
Classic work of political history and philosophy tracing the threads of liberty and the rule of law from the Greeks, Hebrews, Romans, Medieval kings, through the Reformation and Enlightenment - to the founding of America and the establishment of the Constitutional. Recommended for any high school level government or history study.

The Federalist Papers by Madison and Hamilton
From the pens of America's founders, read the motivation and purpose of the Constitution. Enjoy the wisdom and brilliance of these great statesmen.

Alexander Hamilton: A Biography by Forrest McDonald
Very readable, compelling account of an often overlooked Founding Father. McDonald's book will convince you that Hamilton's importance is second only to Washington regarding the survival and flourishing of the American nation.
Though published in 1982, McDonald's account of Hamilton's efforts as Secretary of Treasury to establish investor confidence and pay down the enormous foreign debt of the newly established nation read much like 2008-2009 financial market headlines.
A great book on a brilliant man whose insight and confidence preserved a fragile country.

A History of the American People by Paul Johnson
Riveting account of America, the events and people that formed and continue to guide her. Don't read a textbook - read Paul Johnson and fall in love with history.

1984 by George Orwell
A violent book featuring adultery and fornication as major themes. A not unreasonable depiction of depravity in a totalitarian state. Parental discretion advised.

Darwin on Trial by Phillip Johnson
In this very readable, engaging volume, law professor Phillip Johnson evaluates the evidence for Darwinism. Statements of recent advocates such as Gould and Dawkins are examined.

Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
"Mere" not as in trivial, but as in "Basic". Lewis argues from common sense for the truth of the scripture and the necessity of Jesus, the God-Man, as the only possible Savior. Life changing for millions over the last 60 years.

Abolition of Man by C. S. Lewis
Concerns about state control of education motivate Lewis to consider the slavery mankind must endure if he is educated, and thus ruled, by his political master. An important book in our day of big government's continual encroachments.

Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Bonhoeffer, who died at the hands of the Nazis, lays out a vision for authentic community life among Christian believers. Helpful insights from an authentic believer who risked his life that others might live.

Orthodoxy by G. K. Chesterton
Spectacular, profound, wonderful look at the world and people God made, by one of the early 20th century's most influential authors. Life-changing perspectives. All time #1 at EveryGoodBook!

The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkein
Tolkein's epic recounts the Great War of the Ring and the closing of Middle-Earth's Third Age, when evil begins to rise.