Ralph Waldo Emerson and Transcendentalism Essay

Submitted By keolson13
Words: 329
Pages: 2

Transcendentalism is a type of literary and philosophical movement started appearing around 1830’s. The term “transcendental” is first used by German philosopher, Immanuel Kant, to describe the spontaneity of human mind and how not every object can be known that individuals can reason truths on their own (Hayes). At the time period, Unitarianism was very popular religion which influenced heavily on the rise of transcendentalism. Unitarianism emphasizes individual’s freedom of religious interpretation by reducing the importance of God. Unitarianists believe that the spiritual transformation is obtained from the nature (Finseth). Besides Kantian idealism and Unitarianism, there were many religious ideas, philosophies, and literary movements affected transcendentalism. Overall, Transcendentalism argues that self-realization is a way to observe mysterious nature and obtain true knowledge. It also acknowledges the existence of two spiritual tendencies such as embracing the entire universe to be harmonious and remain separate from the universe (Reuben).
There are many named writers associated with transcendentalism, but Margaret Fuller is the most influential writer that was able to put out the works of transcendentalists and spread the movement to the general public. This was done by working as an editor of the Dial, a transcendentalist magazine. On the magazine, she published an essay called “The Great Lawsuit: Man versus Men. Woman versus Women” which contains many