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New England Beyond Criticism: In Defense of America’s First Literature

New England Beyond Criticism: In Defense of America’s First Literature

Elisa New

ISBN: 978-1-118-85454-9

Jun 2014

332 pages

In Stock

$35.95

Description

Timely and beautifully written, New England Beyond Criticism provides a passionate defense of the importance of the literature of New England to the American literary canon, and its impact on the development of spirituality, community, and culture in America.

  • An exploration and defense of the prominence of New England’s literary tradition within the canon of American literature
  • Traces the impact of the literature of New England on the development of spirituality, community, and culture in America
  • Includes in-depth studies of work from authors and poets such as William Bradford, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Henry David Thoreau, Susan Howe, and Marilynne Robinson
  • Examines the place and impression of New England literature in the nation’s intellectual history and the lives of its readers
Acknowledgments vii

1 Introduction: New England Beyond Criticism 1

Part I Excitations: Protestant Ups and Downs 21

2 Variety as Religious Experience: Four Case Studies: Dickinson, Edwards, Taylor, and Cotton 23

3 The Popularity of Doom: From Wigglesworth, Poe, and Stowe through The Da Vinci Code 47

4 “I Take—No Less than Skies—”: Dickinson’s Flights 75

Part II Congregations: Rites of Assembly 103

5 Lost in the Woods Again: Coming Home to Wilderness in Bradford, Thoreau, Frost, and Bishop 105

6 Growing Up a Goodman: Hawthorne’s Way 140

7 “Shall Not Perish from the Earth”: The Counting of Souls in Jewett, Du Bois, E.A. Robinson, and Frost 160

8 Disinheriting New England: Robert Lowell’s Reformations 201

Part III Matriculations: In Academic Terms 225

9 Winter at the Corner of Quincy and Harvard: The Brothers James 227

10 Upon a Peak in Beinecke: The Beauty of the Book in the Poetry of Susan Howe 235

11 Balm for the Prodigal: Marilynne Robinson’s Gilead 265

12 A Fable for Critics: Autobiographical Epilogue 279

Index 308