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Lecture 001 - The Scarlet Letter (Emerson)

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English 3667F/G
Stephen Adams

American LiteratureSeptember 14 2011Lecture 001The Scarlet Letterpublished in 1850action of the novel took place in 1650 200 years before the time the novel was actually written Hawthorne was writing a historical novel reconstructing and interpreting a previous ageRecognized as a great book when it was publishedSL has maintained its position as an American classic through the yearsThe canon of American Literature has tended to fluctuate and changeHawthorne speaks to the American mind and mentality especially in SLConcentrates on Puritan heritage More pictorial than scenic Preachy narrator telling us what to thinkoSubversive voice very devious Sins characters commit in the novel are never the ones they think theyve committed paradoxicalWho reads American novels The English novel is a novel of manners and class The American novel tends to focus moreso on metaphysical issues nature of being nature of relationship of the individual etc Demand for meticulous realism in the novelRomance tends to diverge into Gothic elementsoGothic
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