Composition Reading Bank: Table of Contents

An Open Educational Resource for Composition Courses

The texts in the Composition Reading Bank are organized thematically, and each link after the text will take you to the tab in which that text is located. The texts marked with a red asterisk (*) are from websites that implement monthly article viewing limits. More information about finding alternative, reliable locations for these texts can be found by clicking/tapping on the “Limited Access” tab.

A - C    D - F    G - I    J - L    M - O    P - R    S - U   V - Z

Ajayi, Luvvie. "Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable" [TED Talk]  (Politics)

* Alfasi, Kawther. "The Loneliness of Early Parenthood"  (Limited Access)

Ashford, Alex. "'Da Souf Got Sum To Say': On The Willful Mistranslation Of Andre 3000’s Famous Line" (Language)

Baron, Dennis. "Facebook Multiplies Genders but Offers Users the Same Three Tired Pronouns" (Identity)

Barry, Linda. "Sanctuary" (Education)

Bauer-Wolf, Jeremy. "Overconfident Students, Dubious Employers" (Education)

"Be a Lady They Said" [Vimeo Video]  (Identity)

Beato, Greg. "Internet Addiction" (Media & Technology)

* Beck, Julie. "Facebook: Where Friendships Go to Never Quite Die" (Limited Access)

* Beck, Julie. "How Friendships Change in Adulthood" (Limited Access)

* Beck, Julie. "It's 10 p.m. Do You Know Where Your Friends Are?"  (Limited Access)

Bennett, Geoffrey. "Hip-Hop: A Roadblock or Pathway to Black Empowerment?" (Society & Culture)

Bickerstaff, Allison. "Easy as ABC?" (Education)

Birbiglia, Mike. "Stranger in the Night" [Podcast] (Society & Culture)

Bleyaert, Aaron. "How to Lose Weight in 4 Easy Steps" (Food & Health)

Bliss, Eula. "Time and Distance Overcome" (Society & Culture)

* Bogost, Ian "Stop Trusting Viral Videos" (Limited Access)

Bolina, Jaswinder. "Writing Like a White Guy: On Language, Race, and Poetry" (Language)

* Bowden, Mark "Dumb Kids’ Class" (Limited Access)

* Bowden, Mark. "'Idiot,' 'Yahoo,' 'Original Gorilla': How Lincoln Was Dissed in His Day" (Limited Access)

Boyd, Sophia Alvarez. "Media Literacy: Five Ways Teachers Are Fighting Fake News" (Media & Technology)

Briceno, Eduardo. "The Power of Belief: Mindset and Success" [YouTube Video] (Education)

Brus, Michael. "Self-Loathing Wins Championships" (Society & Culture)

Bunn, Mike. "How to Read Like a Writer" (Education)

Burgess, Anthony. "Is America Falling Apart?" (Society & Culture)

Carmichael, Rodney. "The Prophetic Struggle of Kendrick Lamar’s ‘DAMN.’" (Society & Culture)

* Carr, Nicholas. "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" (Limited Access)

Carroll, Lauren. "Congress let Internet Providers 'Spy On' Your Underwear Purchases, Advocacy Group Says" (Media & Technology)

Chabon, Michael. "Kids' Stuff" (Media & Technology)

* Coates, Ta-Nehisi. "The Paranoid Style of American Policing"  (Limited Access)

Code Switch: Race and Identity, Remixed (Other Collections)

"College, Inc" [Video] (Education)

Comey, James. "Hard Truths: Law Enforcement and Race" [FBI Speech] (Society & Culture)

Cooper, Christian H. "Why Poverty Is Like a Disease" (Society & Culture)

Crosley-Corcoran, Gina. "Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person" (Identity)

Cunningham, Amy. "Why Women Smile" (Identity)

Daly, Christopher B. "How the Lawyers Stole Winter" (Society & Culture)

Davis, J. Francis. "Power of Images: Creating the Myths of Our Time" (Media & Technology)

 "The Declaration of Independence" (Politics)

Dickerson, Debra. "Who Shot Johnny?" (Society & Culture)

Doyle, Brian. "Joyas Voladoras" [Text + Audio] (Science)

Dubick, James, Brandon Matthews, and Clare Cady. "Hunger on Campus: The Challenge of Food Insecurity for College Students" (Education)

Duckworth, Angela Lee. "Grit: The Power of Perseverance" [TED Talk] (Education)

Dweck, Carol. "The Perils and Promises of Praise" (Education)

Eagleman, David. "The Brain on Trial" (Science)

The Electric Typewriter (Other Collections)

Encinas, Jorge. "How Latino Players Are Helping Major League Baseball Learn Spanish" (Language)

Essay Daily (Other Collections)

Fagone, Jason. "What Bullets Do To Bodies" (Society & Culture)

Fallon, Kevin. "Why We Binge-Watch Television" (Media & Technology)

* Fattal, Isabel.  "Why do Cartoon Villains Speak in Foreign Accents?"  (Limited Access)

Fenton, William. "Tackling Slavery in the Classroom With a Graphic Novel and an App" (Education)

Fisher, Helen E. "The Biology of Attraction" (Science)

Franklin, Benjamin. "Learning to Write" (Education)

Franklin, Joey. "The Stigma of Fast Food Work (Working at Wendy's)" (Identity)

Freedman, David H. "Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science" (Science)

* Friedersdorf, Conor. "Social-Media Outrage Is Collapsing Our Worlds"  (Limited Access)

* Fuerst, Saskia. "The Sexy Aging Black Woman in US Advertisements: From Aunt Jemima to the Pro-Age Campaigns" (Limited Access)

Gaiman, Neil. "Why Our Future Depends on Libraries, Reading and Daydreaming" (Education)

Gay, Roxane. "The Careless Language of Sexual Violence" (Language)

Gay, Roxane. "A Tale of Three Coming Out Stories" (Identity)

Giamatti, A. Bartlett. "The Green Fields of the Mind" (Society & Culture)

Gleick, James. "What Defines a Meme?" (Media & Technology)

Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von. "Aphorisms on Nature" (Language)

Goetz, Thomas. "Harnessing the Power of Feedback Loops" (Language)

Goode, J.J. "Single-Handed Cooking" (Food & Health)

* Gopnik, Adam. "The Information (How the Internet Gets Inside Us)"  (Limited Access)

Graff, Gerald. "Hidden Intellectualism" (Education)

Gray, Briahna Joy. "The Question of Cultural Appropriation" (Society & Culture)

Greenfield, Rob. "My Thoughts on Veganism…and Why I’m Not Vegan" (Food & Health)

A Group of Clergymen. "Letter to Martin Luther King" (Politics)

"Growing Your Mind" [YouTube Video] (Education)

Harris, Tristan. "How Technology Hijacks People’s Minds — From a Magician and Google’s Design Ethicist"  (Media & Technology)

Harrison, Chelsea. "College Students & Social Media" (Media & Technology)

Hartley, Deanna. "Creative Ways to Get Noticed by Employers on Social Media" (Education)

Hawking, Stephen, and Leonard Mlodinow. "The (Elusive) Theory of Everything" (Science)

Hitt, Matthew P. "When Newspapers Close, Voters Become More Partisan" (Politics)

"How Bad Are the Public Schools? Is There a Crisis?" (Education)

"How Microaggressions Are Like Mosquito Bites" [YouTube Video] (Language)

Hughes, Hailey. "Against Inspiration" (Identity)

Hughes, Langston. "Salvation" (Identity)

Hunt, Elle. "Faking It: How Selfie Dysmorphia is Driving People to Seek Surgery" (Identity)

Ifould, Rosie. "'Would You Be Willing?': Words to Turn a Conversation Around (and Those to Avoid)" (Language)

Jensen, Derrick. "World Gone Mad" (Science)

Jones, Jeffrey Owen. "The Man Who Wrote the Pledge of Allegiance" (Society & Culture)

Joseph, Alli. "With Disney’s 'Moana,' Hollywood Almost Gets It Right: Indigenous People Weigh In" (Identity)

Kapadia, Jess. "I Still Don’t Understand the Cultural Appropriation of Food" (Food & Health)

Kennedy, John F. "Address to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association" [Video and Transcript] (Politics)

Kennedy, John F. . "Inaugural Address" (Politics)

Kilbourne, Jean. "Jesus is a Brand of Jeans" (Society & Culture)

* King, Martin Luther, Jr. "Letter from Birmingham Jail" (Limited Access)

King, Martin Luther, Jr. "The Quest for Peace and Justice" (Society & Culture)

Kleeman, Sophie. "The Profiles You'll Never Read in a Magazine Are Happening on Instagram" (Media & Technology)

Koch, Katie. "Mentoring Troubled Teens" (Society & Culture)

Laitner, Bill. "Detroiter’s Commute of Heart and Sole" (Society & Culture)

Lemaster, Austin. "Throw the Notebook at the Wall: What Writing Can Do to the Average Student" (Education)

Lenz, Lyz. "The Mystery of Tucker Carlson" (Media & Technology)

Leonard, Annie. "The Story of Bottled Water" [Video & Transcript]  (Society & Culture)

* Lileks, James. "Foodie Feud" (Limited Access)

Lilienfeld, Scott O. "Why a Moratorium on Microaggressions Policies is Needed" (Language)

Lincoln, Abraham. "Second Inaugural Address" (Politics)

The Literary Hub (Other Collections)

Louie, Sam. "‘I Don't See Color.’ Then You Don't See Me"  (Identity)

Ludden, Jennifer. "Kids' Solo Playtime Unleashes 'Free-Range' Parenting Debate" (Society & Culture)

Lyssy, Nikki and Jill Talbot. "On Blindness and the Teaching of Form in Essays" (Education)

MacGregor, Jeff. "The Lionfish Have Invaded, But a Ragtag Army of Divers and Chefs Are Fighting Back" (Food & Health)

Machiavelli, Niccolo. "The Morals of the Prince" (Politics)

Marchiafava, Jeff. "The Sinking City: Macabre Tales and Mediocre Gameplay" (Media & Technology)

McClune, Jennifer. "Hip-Hop’s Betrayal of Black Women" (Identity)

McGonigal, Jane. "Be a Gamer, Save the World" (Media & Technology)

McKibben, Bill. "The Case for Single-child Families" (Society & Culture)

McRaney, David. "The Backfire Effect" (Language)

McWhorter, John. "Thick of Tongue" (Language)

McWhorter, John. "Txtng is Killing Language. JK!!!" [TED Talk] (Language)

* Miller, Shauna. "The Radical Queerness of Kate McKinnon's Justin Bieber" (Limited Access)

Montgomery, Sidra. "The Emotion Work of 'Thank You For Your Service'" (Identity)

Morrison, Sara. "Covering the Transgender Community: How Newsrooms are Moving Beyond the 'Coming Out' Story to Report Crucial Transgender issues" (Identity)

The Moth  (Other Collections)

Moyer, Melinda Wenner. "More Guns Do Not Stop More Crimes, Evidence Shows" (Society & Culture)

Muir, John. "A Wind-Storm in the Forests" (Society & Culture)

Nestle, Marion. "Utopian Dream: A New Farm Bill" (Food & Health)

"Neuroplasticity" [YouTube Video] (Education)

Nijhuis, Michelle. "Which Species Will Live?" (Science)

Nolan-Ferrell, Catherine. "Balancing Classroom Civility and Free Speech" (Education)

Oates, Joyce Carol. "Rape and the Boxing Ring" (Society & Culture)

Obama, Barack. "Eulogy for Clementa Pinckney" (Society & Culture)

Obama, Michelle. "Note to Self" (Identity)

Olejnik, Izabella. "From a Diary to an iPhone: The Extension of Journaling to Digital Forms" (Media & Technology)

Olenick, Maria, Monica Flowers, and Valerie J. Diaz. "US Veterans and Their Unique Issues: Enhancing Health Care Professional Awareness" (Food & Health)

Olisa, CeCe. "How to Build Self-Confidence" [YouTube Video] (Identity)

"The Opioid Diaries" (Society & Culture)

Orwell, George. "Shooting an Elephant" (Society & Culture)

Pargman, David. "End the Charade: Let Athletes Major in Sports" (Society & Culture)

* Partanen, Anu. "What Americans Keep Ignoring About Finland's School Success" (Limited Access)

Pasulka, Nicole. "How a Bible-Belt Evangelical Church Embraced Gay Rights" (Identity)

Percy, Jennifer. "The Priest of Abu Ghraib" (Identity)

Pilardi, Jo-Ann. "Immigration Problem is About Us, Not Them" (Politics)

* Planos, Josh. "The Dutch Village Where Everyone Has Dementia" (Limited Access)

Plato. "The Allegory of the Cave" (Society & Culture)

Posnanski, Joe. "Mariano Rivera's a True Yankee, Almost Mythical in His Dominance" (Identity)

Powers, Kristin. "Americans are Depressed and Suicidal because Something is Wrong with our Culture" (Food & Health)

Pratt, Kira Marie. "Why We Need to Get in 'Formation': The Rhetoric of Beyoncé" (Language)

Pro Infirmis. "Because Who is Perfect?" [YouTube Video] (Identity)

ProPublica (Other Collections)

Quindlen, Anna. "Stuff is Not Salvation" (Society & Culture)

"Race Becomes More Central to TV Advertising" (Media & Technology)

Raja, Tasneem. "Is Coding the New Literacy?" (Education)

"Random House Copy Chief: Stand Tall, Wordsmiths! (But Choose Your Battles)"" [Text + Audio] (Language)

Rauch, Jonathan. "Be Not Afraid" (Society & Culture)

Rauch, Jonathan. "In Defense of Prejudice" (Language)

Reed, Justin Phillip. "Killing Like They Do in the Movies"  (Society & Culture)

Reinstein, Mara. "I Got Death Threats For Writing A Bad Review Of ‘Aquaman’" (Identity)

* Rich, Sara. "Today’s Masculinity is Stifling" (Limited Access)

Ripley, Amanda. "Complicating the Narratives: What if Journalists Covered Controversial Issues Differently-Based on How Humans Actually Behave When They are Polarized and Suspicious?" (Media & Technology)

Rose, Mike. "Blue-Collar Brilliance" (Society & Culture)

Rosen, Christine. "Our Cell Phones, Ourselves" (Media & Technology)

* Ross, Theodore. "Cracking the Cartel: Don’t Pay NCAA Football and Basketball Players"" (Limited Access)

The Rumpus  (Other Collections)

Salm, Lauren. "70% of Employers Are Snooping Candidates’ Social Media Profiles" (Media & Technology)

Sanders, Scott Russell. "Looking at Women" (Identity)

Sanders, Scott Russell. "Under the Influence" (Society & Culture)

Saujani, Reshma. "Teach Girls Bravery, Not Perfection" [TED Talk] (Education)

Scudder, Samuel. "Take This Fish and Look at It" (Education)

Sherry, Mary. "In Praise of the F Word" (Education)

Singer, Peter. "The Why and How of Effective Altruism" [TED Talk] (Society & Culture)

Sipin, Melissa R. "‘Filipineza’ Doesn’t Mean ‘Servant’: Notes of Witness from an Immigrant Daughter"  (Identity)

Skenazy, Lenore. "My Free-Range Parenting Manifesto" (Society & Culture)

Skloot, Rebecca. "The Woman in the Photograph" (Science)

Smith, Danez. "Dinosaurs in the Hood" [Poem]  (Identity)

Smith, Ernie. "They Should Stop: In Defense of the Singular They" (Language)

Smith, Gwendolyn Ann. "We're All Someone's Freak" (Identity)

Snap Judgment (Other Collections)

Sontag, Susan. "A Century of Cinema" (Media & Technology)

Stanek, Becca. "I Took Multivitamins Every Day for a Decade. Then I Found Out They're Useless" (Food & Health)

Stanton, Elizabeth Cady. "Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions" from 1848 Woman's Rights Convention (Politics)

Stokes, Colin. "How Movies Teach Manhood" [TED Talk] (Identity)

StoryCorps (Other Collections)

Swift, Jonathan. "A Modest Proposal" (Politics)

Tisdale, Sallie. "We Do Abortions Here: A Nurse's Story" (Science)

This American Life (Other Collections)

Thomas, Terrance. "A Letter To My Younger Self" (Identity)

* Thompson, Derek. "The Deeper Scandal of That Brutal United Video" (Limited Access)

* Thompson, Derek. "What in the World Is Causing the Retail Meltdown of 2017?" (Limited Access)

Thoreau, Henry David. "The Battle of the Ants" (Politics)

Thoreau, Henry David. "Where I Lived, and What I Lived For" (Society & Culture)

Toastmasters International. "Five Tips for Public Speaking" [YouTube Video] (Education)

Tobin, Lad. "Here Everything is Possible" (Food & Health)

Truth, Sojourner. "Ain't I a Woman?" (Identity)

Twain, Mark. "Advice to Youth" (Society and Culture)

The Union of Concerned Scientists. "Coal and Air Pollution" (Science)

Urban, Tim. "Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator" [TED Talk] (Education)

Wallace, David Foster. "Consider the Lobster" (Food & Health)

White, E.B. "Once More to the Lake" (Society & Culture)

* Wieseltier, Leon. "Ring the Bells" (Limited Access)

Wilhelm, Jeffrey D., and Michael W. Smith. "The Power of Pleasure Reading: What We Can Learn from the Secret Reading Lives of Teens" (Education)

Winfrey, Oprah. "Acceptance Speech for the The Cecil B. de Mille Award at the 2018 Golden Globes" [YouTube Video] (Society & Culture)

Wizendburg, Stephen. "In the Facebook Era, Students Tell You Everything" (Media & Technology)

Wood, Sarah. "Recent Graduates Lack Soft Skills, New Study Reports" (Education)

Wyman, Nicholas. "Hiring Is On The Rise, But Are College Grads Prepared For The World Of Work?" (Education)

Zaru, Deena. "7 Hip Hop Artists Making America 'Woke' Again" (Society & Culture)

Zhang, Michael. "6 Photographers Asked to Shoot Portraits of 1 Man…With a Twist" [Video] (Identity)


Except where otherwise indicated, the Composition Reading Bank by Rachel Brooks-Pannell, Shawn Casey, Rebecca Fleming, and Nick Lakostik at Columbus State Community College is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. This license does not extend to the contents of external web pages.


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