American Romanticism: Utopian Communities and Transcendentalism

2959 Words Jan 21st, 2011 12 Pages
An Intricate Puzzle:
Utopian Communities and Transcendentalism


An Intricate Puzzle:
Utopian Communities and Transcendentalism
Introduction- The two American Romanticism concepts of transcendentalism and the idealism of utopian communities fit together like an intricate puzzle, but there are still many factors that differentiate them. I. Places faith in inner experience and the power of imagination a. Alike i. Could be alone and do your job ii. Reflections on your own experience iii. Working with the Earth instead of other people allows easier times of reflection iv. People to achieve religious awakening by their own efforts v. Change must be within
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Our will interferes and seperates us from the One
Utopian Communities and Transcendentalism “To go into solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society. I am not solitary while I read and write, though nobody is with me. But if a man would be alone, let him look at the stars (Emerson).” This was written by Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1836 in his book called Nature. He was on a quest to find his own religious insight. Based off of many of his and other writing of the time by various other authors we have come to find a change in how the people of the time practice their religion and find God. Today we call these ideas Transcendentalism. From the ideas, morals, and beliefs of this, people of that time throughout the New England area tried to find ways to create utopia. One such idea was to build their own little cities; they called these cities utopian communities. Names of these cities include the Brooks Farm, Oneida, New Harmony, and Icaria. Because of this, these two American Romanticism concepts fit together like an intricate puzzle, yet there are still so many interesting factors that differenciate them from each other.
One of the first concepts that both utopian communities and transcendentalism share is that they place faith in inner experience and the power of imagination. They allow you to find God in other ways than church; they wanted each person to have their own

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