By Leslie Butler
As questions of citizenship generate new debates for this new release of american citizens, Thomas argues for revitalizing the position of literature in civic schooling. He considers four case experiences within which everyone is awarded in literature as ''the sturdy citizen,'' ''the patriotic citizen,'' ''the autonomous citizen,'' and ''the immigrant citizen.'' He additionally offers research of the civic mythology surrounding Abraham Lincoln and the case of Ex parte Milligan. enticing present debates approximately civil society, civil liberties, civil rights, and immigration, Thomas attracts at the complexities of legislations and literature to probe the complexities of U.S. citizenship.
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Additional info for Critical Americans: Victorian Intellectuals and Transatlantic Liberal Reform
Higginson soon vowed that he would become a writer—a noble, suﬀering one at that. In preparation for his Romantic calling, he took additional classes at Harvard while living in a room adorned simply with a Titian print, a bust of the Greek goddess Hebe, and fresh ﬂowers. He imagined himself a ‘‘sort of pariah, an outcast of the world,’’ a solitary seeker after Truth. Dining frugally on bread and milk, he read voraciously, attended lectures and musical performances, and generally sowed his ‘‘intellectual wild oats,’’ as he later recalled.
The struggle against American slavery, in this view, constituted only one part of a much larger struggle on behalf of worldwide freedom. ‘‘God works for all. ’’ 37 Though Lowell had associated himself with the Garrisonian wing of abolition throughout the s, he was never comfortable with this group’s extremism and found that its members mixed a ‘‘little too much mustard’’ in their salad for his palate. 38 The waning of Lowell’s abolitionist zeal has often been explained as a consequence of the death of his wife, Maria, in and the removal of her important radical inﬂuence.
Nowhere was such basic building of institutions more important than in the realm of American letters. As the middle of the nineteenth century approached, the greater Boston area had already produced a constellation of cultural institutions— most notably Harvard College and the North American Review. But any sort of establishment, especially one with greater than regional inﬂuence, was still VIC T ORIAN DUT Y 27 in the process of becoming. Such pursuits attracted the powers of dozens of young literary men and women who participated in what would later be recognized as an American Renaissance.
Critical Americans: Victorian Intellectuals and Transatlantic Liberal Reform by Leslie Butler