In Respect to Egotism: Studies in American Romantic Writing

In Respect to Egotism: Studies in American Romantic Writing

by Joel Porte
In Respect to Egotism: Studies in American Romantic Writing

In Respect to Egotism: Studies in American Romantic Writing

by Joel Porte

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Overview

Joel Porte offers a timely reassessment of nineteenth century literature, focusing on the general question of the American Romantic ego and its varying modalities of self-creation, self-display, self-projection, and self-concealment. The book begins by exploring the status of the "text" in nineteenth-century American writing, the relationship of "rhetorical" reading to historical context, and the nature of "Romanticism" in an American setting. Porte then concentrates on the great authors of the period through a series of thematically linked but critically discrete essays on Brown, Irving, Parkman, Cooper, Poe, Emerson, Hawthorne, Thoreau, Melville, Frederick Douglass, Stowe, Whitman, and Dickinson. Throughout his important new study, Porte offers provocative reassessments of familiar texts while at the same time casting an illuminating critical eye on less well-known territory. Readers of this book will come away with increased respect for the achievement of American Romantic writers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521110006
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 04/30/2009
Series: Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture , #53
Pages: 336
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Preface; Acknowledgements; Introduction: Writing, reading, Romanticism; 1. 'Where…Is this singular career to terminate?': Bewildered pilgrims in early American fiction; 2. 'Where there is no vision, the people perish…': Prophets and Pariahs in the Forest of the New World; 3. Poe: Romantic centre, critical margin; 4. Emerson: experiments in self-creation; 5. Hawthorne: 'The obscurest man of letters in America'; 6. Thoreau's self-perpetuating artefacts; 7. Melville: Romantic cock-and-bull; or, the great art of telling the truth; 8. Douglass and Stowe: scriptures of the redeemed self; 9. Whitman: 'Take me as I am or not at all…'; Interchapter: Walt and Emily; 10. Dickinson's 'Celestial vail': snowbound in self-consciousness; Notes; Index.
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