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The Rise of China I

For his 1941 landmark book, F.O. Matthiessen chose the title, American Renaissance to signify the blossoming of a great national literary output in the years roughly from 1830-1860. In these years, along with Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville, stood Ralph Waldo Emerson, guiding light of the Transcendentalists, whose essentially optimistic view of the human condition countered the darker outlook of the authors of The Scarlet Letter and Moby Dick. The course will focus on a sampling of Emerson’s lectures, essays, and poems.

Robin McNallie, having taught JMU undergrads from 1965-1998, gladly transitioned into sharing his passion for literature with fellow retirees. He has taught more than 20 LLI courses, most recently “Who’s Afraid of Henry James?,” “Not a Quadrille in a Ballroom: Literary responses to World War I,” “The Dark Worlds of Poe, Hawthorne and Melville,” literature of the Civil War, and Montaigne.


There are no scheduled sessions at this time. Sign up to be notified when this course is available.

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