Nature's God: Emerson and the Greeks

Murphy, Peter (2008) Nature's God: Emerson and the Greeks. Thesis Eleven, 93 (1). pp. 64-71.

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Abstract

This article explores the mystical impulse in the American mind, reflected in the work of William James, Kenneth Burke, and most especially the case of Ralph Waldo Emerson. The parallels and differences between Emerson's mystical idea of Nature and the ancient Greek pre-Socratic idea of the universe as a union of opposites are explored. The divergence between the Americans and the Greeks concerning the idea of limits is reflected on. The optimism of the Americans is explained as a function of their mystical theodicy, and the greatness of their power as a function of their mystic ability, so well assayed by Emerson, to bear crushing paradoxes with a cheerful lightness of being

Item ID: 22561
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: America, Kenneth Burke, Christianity, Deism, Ralph Waldo Emerson, God, Abraham Lincoln, mystic, nature, slavery, Stoic
ISSN: 1461-7455
Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2012 02:21
FoR Codes: 22 PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES > 2203 Philosophy > 220319 Social Philosophy @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture @ 100%
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