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Copy of Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Sara Leonetti

on 16 August 2018

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Transcript of Copy of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Emerson was born on May 25, 1803 in Boston, Massachusetts to William and Ruth Haskins Emerson. William, a Unitarian minister, died when Emerson was only eight years old, making his childhood hard for him and his brothers. He was the second of five boys that survived childhood.

Emerson's grave in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, Concord.

-Quick Facts-
Full name: Ralph Waldo Emerson
Occupation: Philosopher, Poet, and Journalist
Born: May 25, 1803
Died: April 27, 1882
Education: Boston Public Latin School, Harvard University, and Harvard Divinity School
Birth Place: Boston, Massachusetts
Death Place: Concord, Massachusetts

Despite his rough childhood, Emerson received a excellent education. After his father's death, Emerson's mother and aunt, Mary Moody Emerson, were in charge of his well-being and education. At the age of nine, Emerson attended the Boston Public Latin School. He would later attend Harvard College in 1817 until he graduated in 1821. Lastly, after wishing to pursue the study of theology, he would attend Harvard's Divinity School in 1825.

-Early Adulthood-
Following his father's footsteps, Emerson began preaching as a Unitarian in October 1826 and in July 1829 was ordained by the Unitarians as a pastor at Boston's Second Church. Also in 1829, Emerson married Ellen Tucker Emerson. When she later died in 1831 due to tuberculosis at the age of nineteen, Emerson faced a spiritual crisis and would later resign his pastorate in December 1832. He would remarry in 1835 to Lydia Jackson of Plymouth.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
-Successful Career and Death-
Emerson was quickly acquainted with the group known as "Transcendentalists" after publishing his first piece of work, "Nature", in 1836. This group consisted of people who rejected the view of the philosopher John Locke. Throughout his career, Emerson wrote numerous essays that would make him famous. These included widely known essays such as "Experience" (1844), "The American Scholar" (1837), "Self-Reliance" (1841), and many more. He also wrote a handful of poems. Emerson continued to give speeches and write until his health would not let him continue. Emerson died on April 27, 1882. He is buried in Concord's Sleepy Hollow Cemetery.

"Self-Reliance" is widely argued as Emerson's most famous and inspiring essay. This widely-known essay

wasn't actually published until 1841 in Emerson's first series of essays. However, long before it's publication, Emerson had given numerous speeches that contained many of the same ideas and thoughts that later appeared in "Self-Reliance." Some believe that Emerson's philosophy for "Self-Reliance" was ignited when his first wife was struggling with tuberculosis.

-Theme and Purpose-
The theme in many of Emerson's writings, that individuals should be more independent minded and avoid conformity and false consistency, is clearly apparent in "Self-Reliance." Emerson believes that society as a whole have become accustomed to following the "norm" even if it makes them unhappy. He urges each individual to be more independent and follow his or her own instincts and ideas. In the essay, Emerson insists that true happiness can't be attained by giving into popular opinion or social pressure, but instead by following your own heart, regardless if it's against the social standard. His famous saying "trust thyself" simply refers to his viewpoint on how to live life.

-Influence and Popularity-
Emerson is widely considered the most influential American writer in the nineteenth century. His writings were known to influence other writers including Henry David Thoreau, Margaret Fuller, Emily Dickinson, Louisa May Alcott, William James, Theodore Dreiser, Robert Frost, John Dewey, and his namesake Ralph Waldo Ellison. Emerson changed the way literature was written and viewed.

-List of Popular Essays-
"Self Reliance"
"The Over-Soul"
"The Poet"
"The American Scholar"
"New England Reformers"

-Some Poems-
"Concord Hymn"
"The Rhodora"
"The Snow-Storm"

Old Manse in Concord, Massachusetts
Title in your journal: TRANSCENDENTALISM

As you watch the video (6:25 min.), do your best to copy the notes you see the student writing and discussing.
What is greater than any institution?
What was the time period of transcendentalism?
From where do basic truths come?
What leads to truth?
What two understandings can we find in nature?
Essentially, what is all we need?
What is the Over-soul?
What did transcendentalism promote?
Where can the goodness of nature be found?
Who are three major transcendentalists?
Please take notes "on" Emerson, filling the back of the 1/2 sheet with interesting facts.
Emerson was exhilarated by nature's beauty and
grandeur. In the presence of nature, Emerson felt he was in tune with his better self and in harmony with eternal things. How do you feel about nature?
Fill a 1/2 page (draw, bullets, poem, paragraph) with your thoughts on anything that nature has taught or revealed to you.

Get an ORANGE lit. book!
I can visualize Emerson's ideas.

Review your thoughts on nature from yesterday.
Read "from Nature" p. 182-183 as a class.
Pair up and answer the in-text questions in your journal.
I can demonstrate knowledge of transcendental (19th c.) foundational works of American literature, including how two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics (RL.11-12.9).
Looking at the answers to the questions you answered from the reading, create a color illustration of Emerson's ideas on the 1/2 sheet provided. Include a quotation that explains your illustration. When finished, paste into your journal after the questions. Please put books back on cart.
I can explore the ideas of transcendentalism in Emerson's writing.

Review your notes on transcendentalism
Preview transcendentalism statements
Read "from Self-Reliance" p. 185-186 as class
Individually, find evidence for as many statements as you can.
I can define civil disobedience
and identify the three types of appeals.
Intro Civil Disobedience p. 208-209; Quickwrite
Define types of appeals; create chart #2 p. 223 on full page in journal
Read Political Points of View p. 210 and explain connection to Emerson
Read to class "Resistance to Civil Government" p. 211-216 and identify each type of appeal

If you haven't finished, match these quotes to the statement they best represent.
These are the voices which we hear in solitude, but they grow faint and inaudible as we enter the world"
To be great is to be misunderstood . . .
We but half express ourselves, and are ashamed of the divine idea each of us represents.
A man is relieved and gay when he has put his heart into his work and done his best.
Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of everyone of its members.
Trust thyself: Every heart vibrates to that iron string.
There is a time in every man's education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance, that imitation is suicide ; that he must take himself for better, for worse as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till. The power which resides in him is new in nature, and none but him knows what that is which he can do, nor does he know until he has tried.
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