Visionary Compacts Visionary Compacts: American Renaissance Writings in Cultural Context

by Donald E. Pease

The University of Wisconsin Press, 1987
Copyright © 1987 by The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System

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About the Book

In a major contribution to American literary culture, Donald E. Pease reassesses the works of a number of major writers of the American Renaissance, including Hawthorne, Whitman, Emerson, Melville, and Poe. He argues that the Revolutionary mythos, used to explain and organize American Renaissance literature for a century, was not used as an organizing principle by these writers. Pease succeeds in showing that the literature of the 1830s, 1840s, and 1850s addressed specific concerns about the fate of the nation under the political challenges of abolition and secession, the tensions between nationality and locality, and the threat of a civil war they sought to prevent.


About the Author

Donald E. Pease is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Dartmouth College. He is the Ted and Helen Geisel Third Century Professor in the Humanities and Chair of the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies Program at Dartmouth.


About the Electronic Publication

This electronic publication of Visionary Compacts was made possible with the permission of the author. University Press of New England created EPUB, MOBI, and PDF files from a scanned copy of the book.


Rights Information

Dartmouth College Library assigns a Creative Commons BY-NC license to the digital work and associated web site.

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Bibliographic Information

Published by The University of Wisconsin Press, Madison, Wis., 1987. 303 pages.
Print edition: PS211 .P38 1987

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