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Summary Ralph Waldo Emerson was a nineteenth century American literary philosopher and the chief figure of the New England Renaissance. His work reflects earlier Anglo-American and European traditions of thought and was a significant influence on subsequent developments in American philosophy and American culture generally--where he and his writings are deeply rooted. 
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  1. Elizabeth Kemper Adams (1909). Education: An Essay and Other Selections by Ralph Waldo Emerson. [REVIEW] Journal of Philosophy 6 (17):471.
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  2. Steven G. Affeldt (2004). Review of David Mikics, The Romance of Individualism in Emerson and Nietzsche. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2004 (9).
    All students of Nietzsche know of his profound admiration for Emerson’s writing. However, as Stanley Cavell has observed, this knowledge has mostly been repressed or ineffective; which is to say that the extent, depth, and specificity of Emerson’s influence upon Nietzsche has remained largely unacknowledged and unassessed. In the course of the past decade or so, owing in large part to the influence of Cavell’s own work on Emerson (and Nietzsche), this situation has begun to change. Emerson’s work has increasingly (...)
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  3. Steven G. Affeldt (2003). Review of Richard Eldridge (Ed.), Stanley Cavell. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2003 (11).
    Including the substantial Introduction by Richard Eldridge, this volume consists of nine previously unpublished essays each of which focuses upon a single region of Cavell’s work. While the scope of the issues considered in the volume can be only incompletely indicated by listing the regions addressed, they include: ethics, philosophy of action, the normativity of language, aesthetics and modernism, American philosophy, Shakespeare, film, television, and opera, and the relation of Cavell’s work to German philosophy and Romanticism. The volume also contains (...)
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  4. J. Heath Atchley (2006). The Death of Emerson: Writing, Loss, and Divine Presence. Journal of Speculative Philosophy 20 (4):251 - 265.
    When I cruise the forty-three television channels available to me (and that's basic cable), simultaneously being enchanted and disgusted by much that I see (a kind of Kantian sublime), I cannot help but think that the culture in which I find myself is less articulate than ever. For this situation perhaps the 43rd President of the United States could serve as a useful emblem—a joke that is all too easy to make. But such a diagnosis of the low standard of (...)
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  5. Thomas Augst (1999). Composing the Moral Senses: Emerson and the Politics of Character in Nineteenth-Century America. Political Theory 27 (1):85-120.
    This paper concerns the character of Emerson's philosophy and his ethical thought in its relationship to nineteenth-century politics.
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  6. Babette E. Babich (1994). George J. Stack, Nietzsche and Emerson: An Elective Affinity Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 14 (1):55-57.
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  7. Charles M. Bakewell (1903). The Philosophy of Emerson. Philosophical Review 12 (5):525-536.
    This paper concerns the character of Emerson's philosophy, and his general attitude toward life, in relationship to the human tendency to become isolated or compartmentalized, in view and attitude, by the specifics of work, career and particular perspectives.
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  8. Joseph L. Balu (1977). Emerson's Transcendentalist Individualism as a Social Philosophy. Review of Metaphysics 31:80-92.
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  9. Stephen Barnes (2007). The Conduct of Life. [REVIEW] Newsletter of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy 35 (106):37-38.
    Here H.G. Callaway offers us a new reading edition of the oft-cited, commonly-studies, and widely-enjoyed Emerson text The Conduct of Life. This edition provides an introduction by Callaway, annotations throughout, a chronology, a bibliography, and index, and modern spellings throughout. And it does its job well.
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  10. Stéphane Bastien (2002). Spiritualité, authenticité et l'expérience ordinaire : la figure d'Emerson dans Les Sources du Moi de Taylor. Horizons Philosophiques 13 (1):13-25.
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  11. Stanley Bates (2004). David Mikics, The Romance of Individualism in Emerson and Nietzsche Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 24 (4):274-276.
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  12. Stanley Bates (1992). Stanley Cavell, Conditions Handsome and Unhandsome: The Constitution of Emersonian Perfectionism Reviewed By. Philosophy in Review 12 (3):172-174.
  13. James Bell (2007). Absolve You to Yourself: Emerson's Conception of Rational Agency. Inquiry 50 (3):234 – 252.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson famously warned his readers against the dangers of conformity and consistency. In this paper, I argue that this warning informs his engagement with and opposition to a Kantian view of rational agency. The interpretation I provide of some of Emerson's central essays outlines a unique conception of agency, a conception which gives substance to Emerson's exhortations of self-trust. While Kantian in spirit, Emerson's view challenges the requirement that autonomy requires acting from a conception of the law. The (...)
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  14. Jonathan Bishop (1998). Emerson and Christianity. Renascence 50 (3-4):221-237.
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  15. Joseph L. Blau (1977). Emerson's Transcendentalist Individualism as a Social Philosophy. Review of Metaphysics 31 (1):80 - 92.
    Much of the attention of recent students of American philosophy has been concentrated on the study of philosophers and ways of doing philosophy in the post-Civil War era. It is understandable that this should be so, for the problems of late nineteenth and twentieth century thought are still alive, still perplexing, in our own attempts at philosophic understanding. There is much, however, that is overlooked by narrowing our focus to what Max Fisch and his associates describe as "classic" American philosophy, (...)
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  16. Percy H. Boynton (1929). Emerson in His Period. International Journal of Ethics 39 (2):177-189.
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  17. Vince Brewton, Ralph Waldo Emerson. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    In his lifetime, Ralph Waldo Emerson became the most widely known man of letters in America, establishing himself as a prolific poet, essayist, popular lecturer, and an advocate of social reforms who was nevertheless suspicious of reform and reformers. Emerson achieved some reputation with his verse, corresponded with many of the leading intellectual and artistic figures of his day, and during an off and on again career as a Unitarian minister, delivered and later published a number of controversial sermons. Emerson’s (...)
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  18. T. H. Brobjer (2003). Nachweis Aus Emerson, Ralph Waldo: The Conduct of Life. Nietzsche Studien 32:443-443.
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  19. Michael Brodrick (2011). American Transcendentalism. In James Fieser & Bradley Dowden (eds.), Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    American transcendentalism is essentially a kind of practice by which the world of facts and the categories of common sense are temporarily exchanged for the world of ideas and the categories of imagination. The point of this exchange is to make life better by lifting us above the conflicts and struggles that weigh on our souls. As these chains fall away, our souls rise to heightened experiences of freedom and union with the good. Emerson and Thoreau are the two most (...)
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  20. Percy W. Brown (1957). Emerson's Philosophy of Aesthetics. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 15 (3):350-354.
    As this writer reads him, Emerson's thinking falls into three loose and broad categories. He held soul to be divine, that intuition or divine spark within every man, whereby every man is capable of infinite growth. He regarded Nature as the lengthened shadow of God cast upon human sense, a kind of incarnation of some Divine Power here on earth. And he believed Deity ever near to man, and every soul possessed of access to Deity, not continuously, but at least (...)
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  21. Robert E. Burkholder & Joel Myerson (1984). Ralph Waldo Emerson. In Joel Myerson (ed.), The Transcendentalists: A Review of Research and Criticism. Modern Language Association of America.
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  22. H. G. Callaway (2010). Memories and Portraits, Explorations in American Thought. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
    In Memories and Portraits: Explorations in American Thought, H. G. Callaway embeds his distinctive contextualism and philosophical pluralism within strands of history and autobiography, spanning three continents. Starting in Philadelphia, and reflecting on the meaning of home in American thought, he offers a philosophically inspired narrative of travel and explorations, in Europe and Africa, illuminating central elements of American thought—partly out of diverse foreign and domestic reactions and fascinating cultural contrasts. -/- This book is of interest for the contemporary interplay (...)
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  23. H. G. Callaway (2009). Review of D.W. Howe, What Hath God Wrought. [REVIEW] History News Network, Online 2009.
    This is my review of D.W. Howe's 2007 book, What Hath God Wrought, Transformation of America 1815-1848. The book is a volume in the new Oxford History of the U.S.(O.U.P. 2007)--exploring the transformation of the early American republic through the period of domination of the Jacksonian Democrats. This is also the period of the New England Renaissance and the early work of R.W. Emerson. Howe devotes a good deal of attention to Emerson and his influence and thereby provides needed historical (...)
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  24. H. G. Callaway (2008). R.W. Emerson, Society and Solitude, Twelve Chapters. Edwin Mellen Press.
    This new edition of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Society and Solitude reproduces the original 1870 edition—only updating nineteenth-century prose spellings. Emerson’s text is fully annotated to identify the authors and issues of concern in the twelve essays, and definitions are provided for selected words in Emerson’s impressive vocabulary. The work aims to facilitate a better understanding of Emerson’s late philosophy in relation to his sources, his development and his subsequent influence.
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  25. H. G. Callaway (2008). Emerson and the Law of Freedom. In , R.W. Emerson, Society and Solitude: Twelve Chapters. Mellon Press.
    This paper is the expository and evaluative introduction to my new edition of Emerson's Society and Solitude, Twelve Chapters.
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  26. H. G. Callaway (2007). Emerson and Santayana on Imagination. In Flamm And Skowronski (ed.), Under Any Sky, Contemporary Readings on George Santayana.
    This paper examines Santayana on imagination, and related themes, chiefly as these are expressed in his early work, Interpretations of Poetry and Religion (1900). My hypothesis is that Santayana under-estimates, in this book, the force and significance of the prevalent distinction between imagination and fancy, as this was originally put forward by Coleridge and later developed in Emerson’s late essays. I will focus on some of those aspects of Santayana’s book which appear to react to or to engage with Emerson’s (...)
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  27. H. G. Callaway (ed.) (2006). R.W. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: A Philosophical Reading. University Press of America.
    This new edition emphasizes Emerson's philosophy and thoughts on such issues as freedom and fate; creativity and established culture; faith, experience, and evidence; the individual, God, and the world; unity and dualism; moral law, grace, and compensation; and wealth and success. Emerson's text has been fully annotated to explain difficult words and to clarify his references. The Introduction, Notes, Bibliography, Index, and Chronology of Emerson's life help the reader understand his distinctive outlook, his contributions to philosophy, and his place in (...)
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  28. H. G. Callaway (2006). Emerson on Creativity in Thought and Action. In , R.W. Emerson, The Conduct of Life: A Philosophical Reading.
    The opening essay of Emerson’s 1860 book, The Conduct of Life, posed, in that fateful year of threatening Civil War and disunion, the philosophical problem of human freedom and fate. The essay “Fate” is followed in the present book by a series of essays on related themes, including: “Power,” “Wealth,” “Culture,” “Worship,” “Beauty” and “Illusions.” The central question of the volume is, “How shall I live?” Appreciating both our freedom and its limits, we understand the vitality of power to acquire (...)
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  29. H. G. Callaway (1999). Review of Mott, W.T and R.E. Burkholder Eds., Emersonian Circles, Essays in Honor of Joel Myerson. [REVIEW] Transactions of the C.S. Peirce Society 35 (3):629-632.
    The 14 essays assembled in this volume, along with their intensive scholarship, create somewhat the impression of a Who's Who of contemporary literary studies of Ralph Waldo Emerson and the American Transcendentalists. All has been brought together by Mott and Burkholder to honor Joel Myerson, with the words of Emerson's famous remark to Walt Whitman, "We greet You at the Mid-point of a Great Career" (p. xi). An authority on Transcendentalism, textual and bibliographical studies, Myerson has written, edited, or co-edited (...)
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  30. J. Campbell (1982). Rethinking Emerson-an Examination of His Enduring Value. Journal of Thought 17 (4):56-67.
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  31. F. Cauchi (forthcoming). Geroge J. Stack, Nietzsche and Emerson. Radical Philosophy.
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  32. Stanley Cavell (2003). Emerson’s Transcendental Etudes. Stanford University Press.
    This book is Stanley Cavell’s definitive expression on Emerson. Over the past thirty years, Cavell has demonstrated that he is the most emphatic and provocative philosophical critic of Emerson that America has yet known. The sustained effort of that labor is drawn together here for the first time into a single volume, which also contains two previously unpublished essays and an introduction by Cavell that reflects on this book and the history of its emergence. -/- Students and scholars working in (...)
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  33. Stanley Cavell (2003). Old and New in Emerson and Nietzsche. International Studies in Philosophy 35 (3):53-62.
    This paper concerns the interpretation of Nietzsche and his readings of R.W. Emerson.
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  34. Stanley Cavell (1995). Philosophical Passages: Wittgenstein, Emerson, Austin, Derrida. Blackwell.
    Introduction Cavell's Voices and Derrida's Grammatology The stature of Stanley Cavell is increasingly considered unique among living American philosophers ...
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  35. Stanley Cavell (1994). This New yet Unapproachable America: Essays After Emerson After Wittgenstein. Living Batch Books.
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  36. Stanley Cavell (1990). Conditions Handsome and Unhandsome the Constitution of Emersonian Perfectionism. University of Chicago Press.
    In these three lectures, Cavell situates Emerson at an intersection of three crossroads: a place where both philosophy and literature pass; where the two traditions of English and German philosophy shun one another; where the cultures of America and Europe unsettle one another.
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  37. Stanley Cavell (1989/2013). This New yet Unapproachable America: Lectures After Emerson After Wittgenstein. Living Batch Press.
    The two essays in this book, first published in 1989, were delivered as two of the 1987 Carpenter Lectures at the University of Chicago. Wittgenstein and Emerson are major influences on and subjects of Cavell's thought, and here he thinks and rethinks of these two intellectual forebears. As the title shows, he finds an important crux for contemplation in Emerson's idea of America.
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  38. Stanley Cavell (1988). Conditions Handsome and Unhandsome The Constitution of Emersonian Perfectionism: The Carus Lectures, 1988. University of Chicago Press.
    In these three lectures, Cavell situates Emerson at an intersection of three crossroads: a place where both philosophy and literature pass; where the two traditions of English and German philosophy shun one another; where the cultures of America and Europe unsettle one another.
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  39. Stanley Cavell (1988). In Quest of the Ordinary: Lines of Skepticism and Romanticism. University of Chicago Press.
    These lectures by one of the most influential and original philosophers of the twentieth century constitute a sustained argument for the philosophical basis of romanticism, particularly in its American rendering. Through his examination of such authors as Emerson, Thoreau, Poe, Wordsworth, and Coleridge, Stanley Cavell shows that romanticism and American transcendentalism represent a serious philosophical response to the challenge of skepticism that underlies the writings of Wittgenstein and Austin on ordinary language.
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  40. Stanley Cavell (1988). Conditions Handsome and Unhandsome: The Constitution of Emersonian Perfectionism: The Carus Lectures, 1988. University Of Chicago Press.
    In these three lectures, Cavell situates Emerson at an intersection of three crossroads: a place where both philosophy and literature pass; where the two ...
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  41. Matt Christensen (1996). Emerson. Newsletter of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy 24 (74):37-39.
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  42. Arthur E. Christy (1928). Emerson's Debt to the Orient. The Monist 38 (1):38-64.
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  43. Vincent Colapietro (2007). Aligning Deweyan Pragmatism and Emersonian Perfectionism: Re-Imagining Growth and Educating Grown-Ups. Journal of Philosophy of Education 41 (3):459–469.
    This essay examines in detail the triangulated conversation Naoko Saito constructs, in The Gleam of Light, among the voices of R. W. Emerson, John Dewey and Stanley Cavell. The pivot around which everything turns is the Emersonian ideal of moral perfectionism and, in particular, the implications of this ideal for the philosophy of education. As explicated by Cavell, this ideal concerns ‘the dimension of moral thought directed less to restraining the bad than to releasing the good’. For the conscientious person, (...)
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  44. Vincent Colapietro (2004). The Question of Voice and the Limits of Pragmatism: Emerson, Dewey, and Cavell. Metaphilosophy 35 (1-2):178-201.
    One criticism of pragmatism, forcefully articulated by Stanley Cavell, is that pragmatism fails to deal with mourning, understood in the psychoanalytic sense as grief-work (Trauerarbeit). Such work would seemingly be as pertinent to philosophical investigations (especially ones conducted by pragmatists) as to psychoanalytic explorations. Finding such themes as mourning and loss in R. W. Emerson's writings, Cavell warns against assimilating Emerson's voice to that of American pragmatism, especially Dewey's instrumentalism, for such assimilation risks the loss or repression of Emerson's voice (...)
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  45. Frank M. Coleman (2010). Classical Liberalism and American Landscape Representation: The Imperial Self in Nature. Ethics, Place and Environment 13 (1):75 – 96.
    Here it is shown that 'vacant nature' is deployed as sign in Anglo-American landscape representation of the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries to support a Cartesian imaginary of spatial extension. The referent of this imaginary is variously denoted as 'America' (John Locke), the 'north west' (Jefferson), the 'wilderness' (Ralph Waldo Emerson), and the 'frontier' (Frederick Jackson Turner) but throughout it is essentially the same 'vacant' landscape; its function is to produce a site and space of appearance for an imperial self, an (...)
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  46. Thomas Cooper & Tom Kelleher (2001). Better Mousetrap? Of Emerson, Ethics, and Postmillennium Persuasion. Journal of Mass Media Ethics 16 (2 & 3):176 – 192.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson reputedly said, "If you build a better mouse trap, the world will beat a path to your door." In this article, Emerson's actual quote is seen to infer a simple rule: quality supply attracts quantity demand. Such a rule could imply that enitre businesses related to persuasion, such as public relations, advertising, and marketing seem at best unnecessary and at worst unethical. However, Emerson's logic may not apply in modern market places driven by multiple competing images. This (...)
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  47. John Michael Corrigan (2010). The Metempsychotic Mind: Emerson and Consciousness. Journal of the History of Ideas 71 (3):433-455.
    This article argues that Ralph Waldo Emerson employs metempsychosis (reincarnation or the transmigration of the soul into successive bodies) as a figurative template for human consciousness. Mapping various traditions from Hinduism, Pythagoreanism, Platonism, and Neoplatonism onto the vastness of the geological and biological records, Emerson translates metaphysics for modernity: he depicts the soul's journey through the chronological sequence of history as a poetic process that culminates in a tenuous form of self-knowledge.
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  48. John Michael Corrigan (2009). Emerson's Ladder of Ascent: Modernity and the Platonic Tradition. Dionysius 27.
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  49. Robert S. Corrington (1990). Emerson and the Agricultural Midworld. Agriculture and Human Values 7 (1):20-26.
    The metaphor of the “midworld” refers to Emerson's conception of the realm between the human process and nature. In his earlier writings, poetry served as a linguistic midworld that made it possible for the self to relate to the innumerable orders of nature. By the 1840's Emerson's thought had taken a much more skeptical turn and had moved decisively away from his earlier linguistic idealism. As a consequence, his conception of the nature of the midworld changed. The more humble work (...)
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  50. Gregg Crane (2013). Intuition: The “Unseen Thread” Connecting Emerson and James. Modern Intellectual History 10 (1):57-86.
    Recent scholarly comment on the relation between Ralph Waldo Emerson and William James offers an eitherJames connection. This evidence points to a pluralistic and distinctly literary formulation of intuitive insight as the key for opening up the Emersonthe problem of locating a source of value that is both of the self and beyond the self.
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