2TranscendentalismUnitarian ministers realized that society and government controlled what people did and that the individual person as God’s perfect creation, were capable of doing what is right through their souls and intuition.
3TranscendentalismMovement called for new ideas in culture, religion, philosophy, and especially literatureAlso known as “American Transcendentalism” that emerged in New England in middle 19th centuryMovement began as an informal Boston discussion club, but its influence gradually rippled outward to affect the values and beliefs of Americans and US writersBegan as a protest against the general established state of culture and society, in particular the state of intellectualism
4Transcendentalism Core Beliefs An ideal spiritual state that 'transcends' the physical and empirical, and is only realized through the individual's intuition, rather than through the doctrine’s of established religionsRooted in the transcendental philosophy of Immanuel Kant
5PrinciplesIdealism through the fundamental belief in a higher reality of ideas in a metaphysical realm of spirit, that is screened and symbolically revealed by the material worldPantheism in that there was no direct supernatural worship, but admiration and revery, via the natural world and its visible images, and focused on an ultimate “oneness” in which every individual thing forms part of an intricate and larger harmonyOptimism through followers who were convinced of the essential goodness and purposefulness of life
6Influences Kantian metaphysics Romanticism Puritanism Platonism and neo-platonismMysticism
8Popular Transcendentalists Henry David ThoreauRalph Waldo EmersonWalt WhitmanModern Transcendentalists Martin Luther King Jr. Mahatma Gandhi Mother Theresa
9Ralph Waldo Emerson Born in Boston, MA. Raised by his mother and his aunt, both practicing intellectuals.He attended Harvard College where he worked multiple jobs to support himself.He then was ordained a junior pastor at Boston’s Second Church.Began the Transcendental Club, where they published a journal called, The Dial.During this time, Ralph published his most famous work, Self-Reliance in 1842.
10Writing Style Optimistic view of human spirit Natural world held spiritual truthsHighly charged (strong language) “electric”Themes of self improvement, power, fate, history, and Christianity
11The Conduct of Life (1860)Essay broken down into sections revealing a sense of human togetherness and an awareness of man’s limitationsFatePowerWealthBehaviorWorshipBeauty
12Henry David Thoreau Born in Concord, MA. Taught School at Concord Academy in Canton, MA. But dismissed soon after.Went back to Harvard and graduated.Moved back to Concord where he met Ralph Waldo Emerson who became a type of mentor.Emerson’s works inspired Thoreau to spend two years living “simply” in the wilderness.Through his two years, he wrote Civil Disobedience.
13Writing Styles Wrote about nature, history, philosophy Literary style interweaves close natural observation, personal experience, pointed rhetoric, symbolic meanings, and historical lorePoetic sensibility, philosophical austerity, and “Yankee” love of practical detailIdea of survival in the face of hostile elements, historical change, and natural decay
14Waldendeclaration of independence, social experiment, voyage of spiritual discovery, and manual for self relianceBased on a cabin in Walden woods owned by his friend Ralph Waldo Emerson. Emphasizes the importance of being close to nature. Materialists attitudes. Attempt to engage creativity with the better aspects of contemporary culture.
15Civil Disobediencepeople should not permit government to overrule their consciencesMotivated by his disgust for slavery. Government is more harmful than helpful and therefore cannot be justified.
16Margaret Fuller Born in Cambridge, MA. Her father taught her thoroughly, learning to read by the age of 3½ .By the age of 30, Fuller gained the reputation as being the most well-read person in New England.However, her father died in 1835, leaving the family dependent upon her, causing fuller to get a job as a teacher at Alcott’s Temple School in Boston.In 1839, Fuller gained a position at Emerson’s Journal, The Dial, as the editor.While at The Dial, Fuller wrote one of her most famous work, The Great Lawsuit.
17Writing Style Feminist , women’s education, equal rights Reformation of social levels (prisoners, homeless)Psychological well-being of the individualBelieved in the possibility of change
18Elizabeth Peabody Born in Billerica, MA. Worked as an assistant teacher for Amos Alcott in the Temple School in Boston.After the school closed, she published one of her most famous works, Record of a School.She opened a bookstore, where she met Margaret Fuller and hosted a series of meetings called “Conversations” with Margaret Fuller.She then applied and earned the position of Business Manager for Emerson’s journal, The Dial.After the journal disbanded because of the lack of subscriptions, she opened up her own kindergarten.
19Writing Style Woman’s rights fine arts, history, mythology, literature, and natureSupported the education of children younger than age 6 (later became kindergarten)Anti-slaveryled efforts for the rights of the Paiute Indians.
20Amos Bronson Alcott Born in Wolcott, CT. Father of 4 children, among them: Louisa May AlcottTeaching himself to read, Alcott spent a few years as a salesman in the American South.By the Age of 30, Alcott became widely known for his debating Thoreau. During this time he was also played a role in the Underground railroad.In 1834, he opened the Temple School in Boston.After his school disbanded, he moved to Concord, MA where he took part in The Dial, a journal ran by Emerson.At The Dial, Alcott published one of his most famous series of works, Orphic Sayings.
21Writing StyleUtopian socialist (develop the best powers of body and soul)emphasized the ideas of the school of American Transcendentalists led by EmersonPlatonic philosophy, the illumination of the mind and soul by direct communion with SpiritInfluenced the mid 19th century New Thought movement
22The DialAmerican magazine published 1840 and 1929, publication of the Transcendentalists (Transcendental Club, included Emerson, Fuller, Peabody, Alcott)Outlet for modernist literature, vehicle for essays and reviewsViewed as a political magazine, heavily criticizedReestablished as a literary magazine in 1920 to include artwork, poetry, and fictionPublished writers like Ezra Pound, W.B Yeats, E.E Cummings, and T.S Elliot
24Works CitedEncyclopedia Britannica. “Emerson, Ralph Waldo.”American Transcendentalism Web. “The Dial: A Magazine for Literature, Philosophy, Religion, and History.”The Literature Network. “Henry David Thoreau.”