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Thomas Wentworth Higginson, The new world and the new book, VI (search)
ngly commonplace novel The Lamplighter, whose very name is now almost forgotten at home. It is impossible to say what law enters into such successes as this last; but one of the most obvious demands made by all foreign contemporary judgment is, that an American book should supply to a jaded public the element of the unexpected. Europe demands from America not so much a new thought and purpose, as some new dramatis personoe; that an author should exhibit a wholly untried type,—an Indian, as Cooper; a negro, as Mrs. Stowe; a mountaineer, as Miss Murfree; a California gambler, as Bret Harte; a rough or roustabout, as Whitman. There are commonly two ways to eminent social success for an American in foreign society,—to be more European than Europeans themselves, or else to surpass all other Americans in some amusing peculiarity which foreigners suppose to be American. It is much the same in literature. Lady Morgan, describing the high society of Dublin in her day, speaks of one man
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, The new world and the new book, VII (search)
solicitous about a revival of Anglomania, forgetting that the very word Anglomania implies separation and weaning. I can recall when there was no more room for Anglomania in New York than in Piccadilly, for the simple reason that all was still English; when the one cultivated newspaper in the country was the New York Albion, conducted for British residents; when the scene of every child's story was laid abroad and not at home; when Irving was read in America because he wrote of England, and Cooper's novels were regarded as a sort of daring eccentricity of the frontier. Fifty years ago Anglomania could scarcely be said to exist in this country; for the nation was still, for all purposes of art and literature, a mere province of England. Now all is changed; the literary tone of the United States is more serious, more original, and, in its regard for external forms, more cultivated than that now prevailing on the other side. Untravelled Americans still feel a sense of awe before the E
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, The new world and the new book, XVIII (search)
e, is as follows, the number following each name representing the number of books, or parts of books, referring to the person named, and enumerated in the Cleveland catalogue. The actual works of the author himself are not included. The list is as follows:— Washington.48 Emerson, Lincoln (each)41 Franklin 37 Webster34 Longfellow33 Hawthorne25 Jefferson23 Grant22 Irving21 Clay19 Beecher, Poe, M. F. Ossoli (each)16 Theodore Parker, Lowell (each)15 John Adams, Sumner (each)14 Cooper, Greeley, Sheridan, Sherman (each)12 Everett11 John Brown, Channing, Farragut (each)10 Garrison, Hamilton, Prescott, Seward, Taylor (each) 9 Thoreau7 Bancroft6 Allston5 Edwards, Motley (each)5 This list certainly offers to the reader some surprises in its details, but it must impress every one, after serious study, as giving a demonstration of real intelligence and catholicity of taste in the nation whose literature it represents. When, for instance, we consider the vast number
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, The new world and the new book, Index (search)
E. (of Concord), 103. Chaucer, Geoffrey, 179. Cherbuliez, Victor, 79. Chapelain, J., 91. Chaplin, H. W., 76. Chicago Anarchists, the, 68. Choate, Rufus, 213. Cicero, M. T., 4, 13,16, 171. City life, limitations of, 80. Claverhouse, Earl of, 47. Clemens, S. H., 29, 57. Cleveland, Grover, 110. Cobb, Sylvanus, 199, 200. Coleridge, S. T., 197, 215, 217. College education, value of, 113. Comte, Auguste, 32. Contemporaneous posterity, a, 51. Conway, M. D., 31. Cooper, J. F., 58, 62, 155. Corneille, Pierre, 92. Cosmopolitan standard, a, 43. Coster, John, 6. Court of England not sought by literary men, 74. Cousin, Victor, 216. Creighton, Dr., 34. Cruger, Mrs. Julie (Julien Gordon), 11. Crusoe, Robinson, 17. D. Dante, Alighieri, 48,114, 185, 186, 187, 189, 196. Darwin, C. R., 29, 49, 124,125,137, 176, 187. Dead level, the fear of the, 70. Declaration of independence, applied to literature, 4. Delphic oracle, answer of, to Cicero,
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