Henry David Thoreau and the divergent American Ways
1 June, 2009
By Bryan Lower
The Transcendentalists and the liberals share claim to the American heart
The Transcendental movement was a reaction to the Enlightenment. It ran through the American literature of the 19th century, and was spearheaded by famous writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. The tradition of Transcendentalism that runs through the veins of Americans explains why a nation founded on liberal values has such a wide illiberal streak.
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