American Transcendentalism: A History

Philip F. Gura


American Transcendentalism is a sweeping narrative background of America's first team of public intellectuals, the boys and girls who outlined American literature and indelibly marked American reform within the many years prior to and following the yankee Civil battle. Philip F. Gura masterfully lines their highbrow family tree to transatlantic spiritual and philosophical rules, illustrating how those trained the fierce theological debates that, so frequently first in Massachusetts and at last all through the United States, gave upward thrust to useful, own, and quixotic makes an attempt to enhance, even excellent the realm. The transcendentalists might painfully bifurcate over what will be attained and the way, one part epitomized through Ralph Waldo Emerson and stressing self-reliant individualism, the opposite via Orestes Brownson, George Ripley, and Theodore Parker, emphasizing dedication to the bigger social good.

By the 1850s, transcendentalists became ever extra solely to abolition, and by way of war's finish transcendentalism had turn into pointed out completely with Emersonian self-reliance, congruent with the nationwide ethos of political liberalism and industry capitalism.

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