Emerson's Transcendental Etudes

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This book is Stanley Cavell’s definitive expression on Emerson. Over the past thirty years, Cavell has demonstrated that he is the most emphatic and provocative philosophical critic of Emerson that America has yet known. The sustained effort of that labor is drawn together here for the first time into a single volume, which also contains two previously unpublished essays and an introduction by Cavell that reflects on this book and the history of its emergence.

Students and scholars working in philosophy, literature, American studies, history, film studies, and political theory can now more easily access Cavell’s luminous and enduring work on Emerson. Such engagement should be further complemented by extensive indices and annotations. If we are still in doubt whether America has expressed itself philosophically, there is perhaps no better space for inquiry than reading Cavell reading Emerson.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"[A] challenging but endlessly and unpredictably rewarding book."—The Times Literary Supplement
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804745437
  • Publisher: Stanford University Press
  • Publication date: 11/4/2003
  • Series: Cultural Memory in the Present Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 296
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Stanley Cavell is Walter M. Cabot Professor of Aesthetics and the General Theory of Value at Harvard University. The Claim of Reason (1979/1999), The World Viewed (1971/1979), and The Senses of Walden (1972/1981) are among his many celebrated works. David Justin Hodge, author of On Emerson (2002), teaches philosophy and rhetoric at Harvard University.

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Table of Contents

Author's Acknowledgments
Editor's Preface
Introduction 1
1 Thinking of Emerson 10
2 An Emerson Mood 20
3 The Philosopher in American Life (toward Thoreau and Emerson) 33
4 Emerson, Coleridge, Kant (Terms as Conditions) 59
5 Being Odd, Getting Even (Descartes, Emerson, Poe) 83
6 Finding as Founding: Taking Steps in Emerson's "Experience" 110
7 Aversive Thinking: Emersonian Representations in Heidegger and Nietzsche 141
8 Hope against Hope 171
9 What Is the Emersonian Event? A Comment on Kateb's Emerson 183
10 Emerson's Constitutional Amending: Reading "Fate" 192
11 What's the Use of Calling Emerson a Pragmatist? 215
12 Old and New in Emerson and Nietzsche 224
13 Henry James Reading Emerson Reading Shakespeare 234
Notes 251
Works Cited 261
Books by Stanley Cavell 269
Selected Books and Collections on Cavell 270
Index 271
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