Analysis Of Emerson's Self Reliance And Daisy Miller

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Emerson advocated for the complete dismantlement of what he believed to be the flawed consumerist American state of mind resulting from the Industrial Revolution. He mentions in Self Reliance the downfalls of great men caused by“periodical disuse and perishing of means and machinery,” (113) and blames new mechanical inventions for being the greatest halters of human progression throughout history. He focuses on his version of a cultivated man versus an uncultivated man, his version being a man who relates to nature instead of one tied to property. He states that instead of being conned by the material world, a real cultivated man will “become...ashamed of his property, out of respect for his nature,” (114) and therefore will condemn any inheritance …show more content…
Though neither of them condemn travel in Self Reliance and Daisy Miller, both believe travellers should be educated. Their version of education is not one’s grasping of basic of maths, languages, or sciences, but instead a fuller understanding of personal freedom, culture, and society. Emerson and James exemplified in Self Reliance and Daisy Miller that one needs to find balance between their own individuality and cultivation to not impede on other cultures. With an education system focused on adaptability, the American people would be better suited for travel and integrating themselves into another society. James depicts Mr. Winterbourne in Daisy Miller, though thoroughly educated and amiable, as having lost his American identity to a foreign land, and Ms. Miller in Daisy Miller, though passionate and full of personality, infiltrating other’s cultural identities with her own. Emerson and James advocate for a balance between cultivation and individuality, so individuals like Ms. Miller can become more like Mr. Winterbourne without losing their own identity. To them, the proper education is one that teaches adaptability and balance, and it is the only education they believe will thrive in a rapidly changing world set off by the Industrial

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