Early National Literature


The years from the adoption of the Constitution (1787) to the period of Jacksonian nationalism (1828-36) mark the emergence of a self-consciously national literature. The poet Joel BARLOW, who was, like John Trumbull, one of the Connecticut Wits, greeted the new United States with his epic The Columbiad (1807), a reworking of his earlier The Vision of Columbus (1787). Philip Freneau wrote lyric poetry that fused the native scene and native expression. Other writers strove to develop an American literature but did not concentrate on strictly American subjects, using instead the universal themes of romance, virtue, vice, and seduction that pervaded popular novels in England and ...

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bad government. The first professional novelist was Charles Brockden Brown, whose gothic and philosophical romances, beginning with Wieland (1798), anticipated Edgar Allan Poe.
Early in the 19th century, Washington IRVING gained European recognition as America's first genuine man of letters. A History of New York (1809) is a whimsical satire of pedantic historians and literary classics. His best-known tales, "Rip Van Winkle" and "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," appeared in The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent, which was published serially in 1819-20. William Cullen BRYANT emerged in the 1820s as a poet of international stature. His "Thanatopsis" (1817), influenced by the English GRAVEYARD POETS, linked American literature to the emerging English ROMANTICISM. Still, despite European influences, American writers attempted to create a distinctive literature during a time of rising literary nationalism. Noah WEBSTER contributed An American Dictionary of the ...

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"Early National Literature." Essayworld.com. November 28, 2006. Accessed November 27, 2021. http://www.essayworld.com/essays/Early-National-Literature/56247.
"Early National Literature." Essayworld.com. November 28, 2006. Accessed November 27, 2021. http://www.essayworld.com/essays/Early-National-Literature/56247.
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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 11/28/2006 02:33:18 AM
Category: American History
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 645
Pages: 3

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