Picturing Her Landscape: An Interpretation of Amy Lowell’s Poems From Emerson’s Transcendentalism

Chang ZHENG

Abstract


Amy Lowell is a female poet in the American Imagist movement in the twentieth century. The former studies have mainly focused on the images in her poems from the perspective of aesthetics. Few studies have pointed out the philosophical implications of her poetry. This paper tries to approach Lowell’s poems from the perspective of Emerson’s transcendental philosophy. Although the two great figures lived in different times, a direct link between them can hardly be built, they share some similarities, and their poems are colored by transcendental thoughts: Both of them admit the “oversoul”; mankind can be in parallel with nature; both of them oppose the dehumanization of industrialization process; both of them advocate for individuals’ seeking for spiritual freedom. From this spectrum, Lowell’s poems can be considered carrying the spiritual creed of Transcendentalism.

Keywords


Amy Lowell; Emerson; Transcendental philosophy

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References


Abrams, M. H., & Harpham, G. (2004). A glossary of literary terms (7th ed.). Wadsworth: Wadsworth Publishing.

Baym, N., & Franklin, W. (Eds.). (1995). The Norton anthology of American literature (4th ed.). New York: W. W. Norton & Company.

Chang, Y. X. (2003). A survey of American literature (2nd ed.). Tianjing, China: Nankai University Publishing House.

Horton, R. W. (1974). Backgrounds of American literary thought (3rd ed.). New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc.

Milton, R. K., (Ed.). (1962). Emerson, a collection of critical essays. New Jersey: Englewood Cliffs.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/9694

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