This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Nature In American Literature Essay

1348 words - 5 pages

Nature in American Literature
In American Literature many authors write about nature and how nature affects man's lives. In life, nature is an important part of people. Many people live, work, or partake in revelry in nature. Nature has received attention from authors spanning several centuries. Their attitudes vary over time and also reflect the different outlooks of the authors who chose to discuss this important historical movement. A further examination of this movement, reveals prevalence of nature's influence on man and how it affects their lives.
An early work in American Literature, Thanatopsis, is also one of the most influential works of nature and how it affects man. This work portrays nature as being a part of man's life. In this work nature is rendered all around man and acknowledges the support that nature offers for many of our needs. Nature offers a "voice of gladness…[and a] healing sympathy…[to reveal our] darker musings"(4-6). These offers are an asset to man's life but come few, and is all that nature will offer us. However, this communion with nature also confirms the fact that we are indeed nature's creatures and are subject to its laws. As man dies our bodies must be surrendered to the earth that nourished it. Man must be "…a brother to the insensible rock/And to the sluggish clod…"(27-28), and as food for the oak. When man succumbs, he is buried in the earth, which uses his body to feed other forms of life such as: trees, grass, and plants. Along with your body, your soul is also recycled in the earth and becomes a part of nature. According to this attitude, nature is evident in one man's life. Nature also supplied us with many amenities but then regained when man dies and returns to the earth that provided these gallantries for man.
25 years after Thanatopsis, Emerson wrote of Nature, a work that also discusses the subject of man and nature. In this work, man is an object in the middle of living nature. Nature itself draws us from dependence upon the past and invites us to a richer state of being. Do not remember the past for "[t]he sun shines today…[t]here is more wool and flax in the fields…[t]here are new lands, new men, new thoughts"(215). Which suggests that because there is always a tomorrow. Man should not focus on the present and be more concentrated on what will be happening in the future. Emerson believed that nature was beautiful and nowhere else on earth could he find the majestic settings of the macrocosm. As Emerson declares "[in] wilderness, [he finds] something more dear and connate than in streets or villages"(216). He cannot find anything more loved and kindred than in towns and cities than what he finds in nature. Unlike Thanatopsis, Emerson focuses on the living and not the defunct. He tells us that "[in] the tranquil landscape, and especially in the distant line of the horizon, man beholds somewhat as beautiful as his own nature"(216). Man's nature...

Find Another Essay On Nature in American Literature

soundtracks in american literature Essay

832 words - 4 pages isaac webb 4th hour soundtracks in american literature native voices was about nature and the stories told by native americans. many of these myths were told to explain how and why things happened. it said that the native americans were closer to nature than white people. in the story the sun still rises it talks about how native americans viewed things. it also says that their stories were all oral and were later written down. many of these

American Sprirt In Literature Essay

520 words - 2 pages American Spirit America was fertile soil for early writers. Among these were Anne Bradstreet, Jonathan Edwards, Edward Taylor, and Benjamin Franklin. Their writings show the spirit of yesterday's America.Bradstreet showed America's inner strength in her writing about the burning of her house. Her passage, ''Then, coming out, beheld a space the flame consumed my dwelling place and when I could no longer look, I blest His name that gave and took

Communication in American Literature

2950 words - 12 pages American literature has changed since the industrial revolution. As a child matures into an adult, so has American literature grown to include the problems faced in reality. The word “fiction” transformed from the fairy tales of romanticism to the reality of realism in America. Authors such as: Clemens, Howells, Chopin, Eliot, Faulkner, and Anderson have all assisted the move from dreams to reality. Dramatists O’neill and Miller

Common Themes in American Literature

636 words - 3 pages were confused on what was really happing and what they imagined. True beauty, protection of nature, and perception versus reality are three themes that are common among American literature. Each of the authors creates a story to reflect their personal view on life and it becomes connected to the other stories by theme. Theme is one of the most important literary terms used in a story. Without the theme, there would be no meaning to stories.

Romantic Period in American Literature

903 words - 4 pages Romantic Period in American LiteratureIntroductionThe Romantic Movement, in literature initiated in Germany but rapidly extends to England, France, and outside, is reached United State near about year 1820, after some 20 years by publishing Lyrical Ballads, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Wordsworth had modernized English poetry. In U.S. as in Europe, latest advanced vision surprise artistic and scholarly groups. Yet there was a significant

Values In Early American Literature

1336 words - 5 pages Values in Early American Literature "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with inherent and inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," says the Declaration of Independence. This phrase encompasses three major values shown throughout early American literature. The strong belief in religion, freedom, and a strong will for a

This is a critical lens response to the quote literature opens a dark window on the soul, revealing more about what is bad in human nature than what is good

563 words - 2 pages "Literature opens a dark window on the soul, revealing more about what is bad in human nature than what is good." This quote means that literature will show all sides to a person not just their good side. It will show how evil a person maybe even though they may seem nice. I would have to agree with this quote because in the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare. Macbeth was once a noble man but the powers of greed made his true side come out. In

Report on American Literature in general

2068 words - 8 pages for nature as a spiritual as well as physical mother. Nature is alive and endowed with spiritual forces; main characters may be animals or plants, often totems associated with a tribe, group, or individual.The closest to the Indian sense of holiness in later American literature is Ralph Waldo Emerson's transcendental "Over-Soul," which pervades all of life.Examples of almost every oral genre can be found in American Indian literature: lyrics

Varying Definitions of 'America' in American Literature

2001 words - 8 pages Varying Definitions of 'America' in American Literature        Denotations and connotations inherent in the word "America" in different works of American literature have a number of similarities and differences. Often, the definition of the word is not known at the beginning of a work and one of the thematic elements is the search for the true "America," whatever it may be for the author in question. Many American authors raise the

The Portrayal of Women in American Literature

2229 words - 9 pages The Portrayal of Women in American Literature Throughout American Literature, women have been depicted in many different ways. The portrayal of women in American Literature is often influenced by an author's personal experience or a frequent societal stereotype of women and their position. Often times, male authors interpret society’s views of women in a completely different nature than a female author would. While F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Quest for Identity in American Literature

2294 words - 9 pages shadow of her family's glorious past, but according to her own values and standards.The quest for identity in American literature is a major theme that has influenced many American writers. Writers such as Washington Irving, Sarah Orne Jewett, Ernest Hemingway, Eudora Welty, Herman Melville, William Faulkner, Stephen Crane, Katherine Anne Porter, they all tried to define their own identity by continually dealing with this theme in their works

Similar Essays

Nature As Reflected In American Literature. Speaks Of Work By Plato, Twain, Melville, Bryant, And Thoreau

1225 words - 5 pages artist. American artists in particular have been given an invaluable opportunity to explore this realm of the Platonic ideal. Because the American continent and its wilderness was primarily unsullied by the ravages of civilization, the natural world found there by early settlers was much closer to being 'ideal' than anywhere else on Earth. For this reason, nature has become one of the most important subjects of American art, especially Literature

Nature In 16th Century British Literature

2374 words - 9 pages Nature is a fundamental aspect of people's lives. It encapsulates our everyday lives because it is everywhere we go and who we are; it's the air we breathe, the ground under our feet, the way we act, and the way we think. Nature has always been and always will be a major influence in the life of every human being no matter what the time period. The theme of nature in sixteenth century English literature functions as a means of expression

Human Nature Exposed In The Single Most Important Piece Of American Literature, The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn By Twain

1418 words - 6 pages More than a century ago, Mark Twain probably composed the single-most important piece of American Literature to ever be composed. This work, widely known as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, essentially follows young Huck on a series of adventures and experiences with his close friend (and runaway slave), Jim, as they both escape society's burdens. The novel, in a sense, encompasses everything good, bad and in between about and concerning the

"Literature Opens A Dark Window On The Soul, Revealing More About What Is Bad In Human Nature Then What Is Good."

734 words - 3 pages A person once said, "Literature opens a dark window on the soul, revealing more about what is bad in human nature then what is good." In other words, authors unlock an evil portal on the spirit and display more about what is regretful in the human race then what is good. This true is because the writer is free to opinionate and write about their intimate emotions that for the most part are unpleasant. John Steinbeck, author of Mice and Men, said