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New England Renaissance Literature


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Name the authors and works of romanticism
Washington Irving~ The Devil and Tom Walker

William Cullen Bryant~Thanatopsis

Edgar Allen Poe~The Fall of the House of Usher, The Raven
Name the transcendentalists and their works
Ralph Waldo Emerson~Nature, Self-Reliance, The Snowstorm, Concord Hymn, The Rhodora

Henry David Thoreau- Walden
Name the Anti-Transcendentalism authors and their works
Nathaniel Hawthorne~The Minister's Black Veil

Herman Melville~Moby Dick
What are some facts about Emerson's Nature essay?
Synopsis: The most enriching form of solitude is to be alone with nature. Nature can provide perfect joy, a oneness with God, and understanding of the universe.

Themes include: spirtual understanding, the power of nature, and visions and ideals.

Main Idea: Nature inspires human beings

Styles: personification, metaphors
What are some facts about Emerson's Essay on Self Reliance?
Synopsis: It is essential to be true to one's self. the ideal is to exist int the present and to understand nature. If we live lives in which we are true to ourselves then we will understand the great truths and believe in God.

Themes: being true to oneself, and visions and ideals

Purpose: self indepence= spiritual independence

Style: metaphor
What are some facts about Emerson's "the Rhodora" ?
theme: the beauty of nature reflects spiritual beauty and human beings are apart of it.

Synopsis: The speaker encounters a rhodora blooming in the forest one day and tells the rhodora that if sages ask why its beautiful blooms exist that it should say that "Beauty is its own exscuse for existence" and that the speaker never doubted its reason for existence

Imagery: Emersons contrasts the purple petals to the black water for a strong visual image that illustrates the transformation of the flower's beauty

Apostrophe: Emerson uses it to address the flower directly

He also critizes scientific reasoning, considers the rhodora a flower that does not need an explanation, and all things in nature are interconnected

Rhyme Scheme: AABBCDCD
What is some facts about Oliver Holmes and his works?
Oliver Holmes was a fireside poet, a man of letters, and he was the Dean of Harvard, a reformer and one of America's greatest conversationalists.

He wrote "The Chambered Nautilus"

Theme: The human soul should continue to grow and learn until it vacates the body for heaven

Synopsis: The poet compares the nautilus to a ship of pearl. It has known the adventure of the sea but it is now wrecked and every part of the shell is now revealed. Year after year it built a new chamber and moved to a new chamber until it died. From the chambered nautilus the poem hears that he must grow his soul until its shell is free

Metaphor: compares nautilus to ship

Personification: nautilus is personified as a patient builder who moves into his home from the last

Transcendentalist idea: Encouragement toward self reliance and the optimistic belief in growth
Who were the Fireside Poets?
What were the techniques of transcentalists
*focus on love and nature
*expressed ideas and beliefs
*used tradional poetic forms and techniques
What is some information about Henry Longfellow and his works?
He is the best known fireside poet

Psalm of Life
Theme: the purpose of life is to add to the noble achievements of humankind

Synopsis: The poem tells the story of a what the heart of a young man said to a pslamist: Life is not an empty dream; it is real and serious. The soul should not resign itself to the grave but act so that ecah tomorrow show spiritual advancement. Though our time on earth may be short, our art lasts longer. We should behave heroically in the battefield of life and live in the present. Perhaps our actions will inspire those who come after us.

The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls

Theme: Life is short but nature is eternal

Synopsis: The tide rises, the tide falls,. A traveler hurries along the beach toward town, leaving footprints in the sand. After the dark, the sea wahes away the footprints. In the morning, although the day rises, the traveler never sees to the shore.

traveler=individual life

*Repition reinforces that nature is eternal
What is some information on Hawthorne's "The Black Veil"?
Theme: Human beings fail to share or understand our dark secrets of the human soul

Synopsis: Rev. Hooper startles his congregation when he comes to church in a black veil. The people are depressed and frightened by the veil and speculate as to why he is wearing it. Only his Fiancee Elizabeth asks why he wears the veil. When the minister refuses to tell him why, she leaves him and breaks off the engagement. Rev. Hooper becomes a well known clergy man but people avoid him outside of church. On his death bed, he is asked to confess his crime. He smiles and tells them that every one of them wears a black veil. He dies and is buried with the black veil still on.

Setting: Puritan NE
veil= obscurity and darkness of human soul

tone: gloomy and mysterious

style: metaphor
James Russell Lowell

Theme: Poetic inspiration gives the illusion of permanence but it is transient.

Synopsis: The poet cannot still his heart, which he calls a nest that has songbirds in it. When the last sun bird goes, the dead leaves and snow shall whirl in their place. He wished that the birds had been swallows only, for he shall be very lonely without his songbirds. The brown leaves seem to hover, but it is a sweet delusion: Before long they will cover the poet and his song

empty nest= loss of poetic inspiration
songbirds=the poet's poems
What is a synopsis of "The Devil and tom Walker"?
Tom Walker and his wife are poor in spirit and poket. Tom meets the devil in the woods and offers him Captin Kidd's treasure on "certain conditions." Tom's wife enocurages him to accept the offer, but he refuses. She leaves to seek the devil herself and doesn't return after her second attempt. The most probable explanation for her disappearance is that Tom finds her heart and liver in her apron and assumes that the Devil slayed her. Tom seeks out the devil and makes a deal with him to become a money lender if the devil gives him the treasure. Tom regrets making the deal however, and goes to church to repent. But the devil eventually sends for Tom and now his spirit appears only on stormy nights.
Who was the narrator of the "Devil and Tom Walker"?
Diedrich Knickerbocker
What folk tale is "The Devil and Tom Walker" based on?
What are the themes of "The Devil and Tom Walker"?
-effects of greed
-marital relationships
What is the setting of "The Devil and Tom Walker"?
Boston, Mass. (early 1700s)
What are some facts about Washington Irving?
- first internationally recognized American storyteller
-inspired by european heritage
- wrote "The Devil and Tom Walker"
What are the symbols in the "Devil and Tom Walker"?
Tom Walker= human greed and miserliness

deacon peabody tree=hypocrisy and corruption by describing the tree as rotting and weakened by the Devil's ax
What are some characteristics of romanticism?
- exotic settings
-contemplate the natural world
- value imagination over reason
What is the theme of "Snowbound"?
Isolation in the rural world creates warm intimacy among those who share it
What does the crew in Moby Dick represent?
Who was Moby Dick written by?
Herman Mellvile
What did Melville do at age nineteen?
he became a sailor and spent several years exploring the Pacific
What is the main idea in Moby Dick?
Human understanding is limited
What does Moby Dick represent?
the mysteries of the universe that we cannot understand
What is Poe considered the father of?
gothic horror, mystery, and suspense
What is the Mad Trist?
the story that Roderick reads
Where is the setting of the Fall of the House of Usher?
in an unspecified past time and place in the old Usher mansion
What are the themes of the Fall of the House of Usher?
terror of the Unknown
inscapable fate
What is the dual meaning of the title for Fall of the House of Usher?
the end of the family and the actual house
Who is the narrator of the Fall of the house of Usher?
a friend of Roderick Usher
What is the Raven?
a narrative poem?
what does the Raven mean?
a symbol of an ill omen
What is the theme of Emily Dickenson's "this is my letter to the world"?
the poet's inspiration comes from nature
What is the tone of "this is my letter to the world"?
hesitant and humble
what is the synopsis of "this is my letter to the world"?
the poet's unanswered letter to the world is her poetry
who is "snow bound" by?
John Wittier
What was John wittier?
a Fireside poet and Abolitionist
what is the theme of "Snow Bound"?
Isolation in the rurual world creates warm intimacy amongst those who share it
What is "Snow Bound"?
a poem of memory and youth

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