Emerson's Antislavery Writings - Emerson, Ralph Waldo; Gougeon, Len; Myerson, Joel - Yale University Press

Literary Studies

Emerson's Antislavery Writings

  • Ralph Waldo Emerson; Edited by Len Gougeon and Joel Myerson
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This book presents the first comprehensive and authoritative collection of Emerson’s writings against slavery and the subjugation of American Indians—writings that reveal Emerson’s deep commitment to social reform. Included are speeches and lectures that have never before been published or collected in any other edition of Emerson’s writings.

"Taken together, this group of writings constitutes a critical mass of evidence that demonstrates Emerson’s continuous involvement in protest against slavery and other forms of social oppression much more dramatically than has been done before."—Lawrence Buell, Harvard University

"This valuable collection contains eighteen works by Emerson on the subject of slavery written between 1838 and 1863. . . . The texts are well annotated, and a historical introduction rightly demonstrates Emerson’s important participation in the abolition movement."—Nineteenth-Century Literature

"This new volume . . . seeks to put Emerson’s views on abolitionism in a clearer light while fitting the writings into the larger frame of his philosophy of social reform. . . . A skillfully edited volume . . . [that adds] to a deeper understanding of Emerson’s thought."—Charles Sermon, State

Len Gougeon is professor of American literature at the University of Scranton. Joel Myerson is Carolina Research Professor of American Literature at the University of South Carolina.