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American Renaissance Essay

  • Submitted by:
  • on February 25, 2008
  • Category: English
  • Length: 792 words

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Below is an essay on "American Renaissance" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Much of the Romantic literature reveals the authors’ intense reverence for nature.   However, these authors often appear to cherish nature for what it does for man.   Many authors of this time period believed in the external existence of the human soul, that everything could connect, and, ultimately, they had a great love of nature.   This literature of the “American Renaissance” recognized the abounding strangeness of this new continent and the promise it seemed to offer Americans.   The American land assumed special importance for the inhabitants of the young nation, and thus came the basis for Romantic literature.   The Romantic authors were so inspired by the “new world,” that their literature is often adventuresome.
    Romantic authors had a great love of nature.   They revered it.   In Bryant’s “Thanatopsis,” the persona meditates on death, and he moves form grief to consolation.   Nature soothes the speaker with her “voice of gladness, and [her] smile / And eloquence of beauty” (Bryant, line 4). Often times Romantic literature reflected nature as a source of consolation.   Accordingly, readers are able to find peace during difficult times such as death.   Authors also perceived nature as the root to all happiness.   Emerson says to “enjoy an original relation the universe” (Nature 368).   He asks why should we not have a “poetry and philosophy of insight and not tradition” (Nature 368).   In chapter one of Nature, it is suggested to man “to go into solitude” (Emerson 369).   Nature is all around man, but he has to open up to it, take a moment of solitude, and study it to truly experience all the joy it has to offer.   To writers such as William Cullen Bryant, nature is also perceived as a source of guidance and wisdom.   In “To a Waterfowl,” the persona experiences a divine intervention and gains knowledge about life by simply watching the bird.   His wandering eventually ceases, and the persona finds of place of refuge knowing that he is never alone.
    Many Romantics...

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