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Bliss Perry, The American spirit in lierature: a chronicle of great interpreters 52 0 Browse Search
Cambridge History of American Literature: volume 1, Colonial and Revolutionary Literature: Early National Literature: Part I (ed. Trent, William Peterfield, 1862-1939., Erskine, John, 1879-1951., Sherman, Stuart Pratt, 1881-1926., Van Doren, Carl, 1885-1950.) 20 0 Browse Search
James Parton, The life of Horace Greeley 18 2 Browse Search
Raphael Semmes, Memoirs of Service Afloat During the War Between the States 10 0 Browse Search
Rebellion Record: a Diary of American Events: Documents and Narratives, Volume 1. (ed. Frank Moore) 2 0 Browse Search
Cambridge History of American Literature: volume 2 (ed. Trent, William Peterfield, 1862-1939., Erskine, John, 1879-1951., Sherman, Stuart Pratt, 1881-1926., Van Doren, Carl, 1885-1950.) 2 0 Browse Search
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y as the Roman roads were built, nor his houses like the English houses, it is because he feels that he is here today and gone tomorrow. If he has squandered the physical resources of his neighborhood, cutting the forests recklessly, exhausting the soil, surrendering water power and minerals into a few far-clutching fingers, he has done it because he expects, like Voltaire's Signor Pococurante, to have a new garden tomorrow, built on a nobler plan. When New York State grew too crowded for Cooper's Leather-Stocking, he shouldered his pack, whistled to his dog, glanced at the sun, and struck a bee-line for the Mississippi. Nothing could be more typical of the first three hundred years of American history. The traits of the pioneer have thus been the characteristic traits of the American in action. The memories of successive generations have tended to stress these qualities to the neglect of others. Everyone who has enjoyed the free life of the woods will confess' that his own ju
Bliss Perry, The American spirit in lierature: a chronicle of great interpreters, Chapter 2: the first colonial literature (search)
of the transatlantic world. Of all the colonial writings of the seventeenth century, those that have lost least of their interest through the lapse of years are narratives of struggles with the Indians. The image of the bloody savage has always hovered in the background of the American imagination. Our boys and girls have played Indian from the beginning, and the actual Indian is still found, as for three hundred years past, upon the frontier fringe of our civilization. Novelists like Cooper, historians like Parkman, poets like Longfellow, have dealt with the rich material offered by the life of the aborigines, but the long series begins with the scribbled story of colonists. Here are comedy and tragedy, plain narratives of trading and travel, missionary zeal and triumphs; then the inevitable alienation of the two races and the doom of the native. The noble savage note may be found in John Rolfe, the husband of Pocahontas, with whom, poor fellow, his best thoughts are so int
Bliss Perry, The American spirit in lierature: a chronicle of great interpreters, Chapter 5: the Knickerbocker group (search)
ading Irving's Sketch book. In 1821 came Fenimore Cooper's Spy and Bryant's Poems, and by 1826, whthreat. ened to eclipse the fame of Ivanhoe. Cooper, born in 1789, was eighteen years younger thanr his magnificent panorama of the wilderness. Cooper, like Scott, is masculine. He was a Knickernow say. It was bad enough. Yet the next year Cooper published The Spy, one of the finest of his nogh. In his perception of masculine character, Cooper ranks with Fielding. His sailors, his scouts etimes ungrammatical. Amateurs even criticize Cooper's seamanship, although it seemed impeccable tlessness, propriety, and incapacity of most of Cooper's women, and the dreadfulness of his bores, paoctors, and the naturalists. Like Sir Walter, Cooper seems to have taken but little pains in the deimitive veracity of his children of nature. Cooper was an elemental man, and he comprehended, by survival in him of an aboriginal imagination. Cooper reminds one somehow of a moose — an ungraceful[9 more...]
Bliss Perry, The American spirit in lierature: a chronicle of great interpreters, Chapter 7: romance, poetry, and history (search)
e Longfellow assume toward John Greenleaf Whittier an air of deference. This attitude would amuse the Quaker poet. One can almost see his dark eyes twinkle and the grim lips tighten in that silent laughter in which the old man so much resembled Cooper's LeatherStocking. Whittier knew that his friend Longfellow was a better artist than himself, and he also knew, by intimate experience as a maker of public opinion, how variable are its judgments. Whittier represents a stock different from th as thoroughly as Alexander Hamilton, and thought suffrage a failure; a nineteenth century historian who cared nothing for philosophy, science, or the larger lessons of history itself; a fascinating realistic writer who admired Scott, Byron, and Cooper for their tales of action, and despised Wordsworth and Thoreau as effeminate sentimentalists who were preoccupied with themselves. In Parkman the wheel has come full circle, and a movement that began with expansion of self ended in hard Spartan
bedience to the laws of beauty and truth, the emotions stimulated by our national life. It has been assumed in the preceding chapters that American literature is something different from English literature written in America. Canadian and Australian literatures have indigenous qualities of their own, but typically they belong to the colonial literature of Great Britain. This can scarcely be said of the writings of Franklin and Jefferson, and it certainly cannot be said of the writings of Cooper, Hawthorne, Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, Lowell, Lincoln, Mark Twain, and Mr. Howells. In the pages of these men and of hundreds of others less distinguished, there is a revelation of a new national type. That the full energies of this nation have been back of our books, giving them a range and vitality and unity commensurate with the national existence, no one would claim. There are other spheres of effort in which American character has been more adequately expressed than in words. Never
1856), Thomas Paine, Life by M. D. Conway, 2 volumes (1892), Works edited by Conway, 4 volumes (1895), Philip Freneau, Poems, 3 volumes (Princeton edition, 1902), Thomas Jefferson, Works edited by P. L. Ford, 10 volumes (1892-1898), J. Woolman, Journal (edited by Whittier, 1871, and also in Everyman's Library), the Federalist (edited by H. C. Lodge, 1888). Chapter 5. Washington Irving, Works, 40 volumes (1891-1897), also his Life and letters by P. M. Irving, 4 volumes (1862-1864). Fenimore Cooper, Works, 32 volumes (1896), Life by T. R. Lounsbury (1883). Brockden Brown, Works, 6 volumes, (1887). W. C. Bryant, Poems, 2 volumes (1883), Prose, 2 volumes (1884), and his Life by John Bigelow (1890). Chapter 6. H. C. Goddard, Studies in New England Transcendentalism (1908). R. W. Emerson, Works, 12 volumes (Centenary edition, 1903), Journal, 10 volumes (1909-1914), his Life by J. E. Cabot, 2 volumes (1887), by R. Garnett (1887), by G. E. Woodberry (1905); see also Ralph Waldo E
of Calaveras County, the, Clemens 237 Century magazine, 256 Changeling, the, Lowell, 172 Channing, Edward, 13 Channing, W. E., 112, 113, 119, 142 Chateaubriand, Vicomte de, 96-97 Children's hour, the, Longfellow 157 Chita, Hearn 248 Chinese Ghosts, Hearn 248 Choate, Rufus, 215 Church, Captain, 39 Circuit rider, the, Eggleston 247 City in the sea, the, Poe 189 Clark, Roger, 41 Clarke, J. F., 141 Clay, Ienry, 208, 209-11 Clemens, S. L. (Mark Twain), attacks Cooper's novels, 99; quoted, 236; life and writings, 237-40; typically American, 265 Cobbler Keezar's vision, Whittier 161 Cody, W. F. (Buffalo Bill), 243 Columbus, life of, Irving 91 Commemoration Ode, Lowell 170, 172 Common sense, Paine 75 Conquest of Granada, Irving 91 Conquest of Mexico, Prescott 179 Conquest of Peru, Prescott 179 Conspiracy of Pontiac, the, Parkman 184 Cooke, Rose Terry, 249 Cooper, J. F., 95-101, 265 Cotton, John, 18, 32 Courtship of miles Standi