Essay about Nature in American Literature

Essay about Nature in American Literature

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Nature in American Literature
In American Literature many authors write about nature and how nature affects man's lives. In life, nature is an important part of people. Many people live, work, or partake in revelry in nature. Nature has received attention from authors spanning several centuries. Their attitudes vary over time and also reflect the different outlooks of the authors who chose to discuss this important historical movement. A further examination of this movement, reveals prevalence of nature's influence on man and how it affects their lives.
An early work in American Literature, Thanatopsis, is also one of the most influential works of nature and how it affects man. This work portrays nature as being a part of man's life. In this work nature is rendered all around man and acknowledges the support that nature offers for many of our needs. Nature offers a "voice of gladness…[and a] healing sympathy…[to reveal our] darker musings"(4-6). These offers are an asset to man's life but come few, and is all that nature will offer us. However, this communion with nature also confirms the fact that we are indeed nature's creatures and are subject to its laws. As man dies our bodies must be surrendered to the earth that nourished it. Man must be "…a brother to the insensible rock/And to the sluggish clod…"(27-28), and as food for the oak. When man succumbs, he is buried in the earth, which uses his body to feed other forms of life such as: trees, grass, and plants. Along with your body, your soul is also recycled in the earth and becomes a part of nature. According to this attitude, nature is evident in one man's life. Nature also supplied us with many amenities but then regained when man dies...


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...ature, in man's eyes, comes in many forms and sizes. Nature could be viewed many ways in the eyes' of man. The view that I agree with the most is the note of Bryant. He believed that when one man dies, his body is precipitated along with his soul, in nature. I tend to believe that when a man dies he takes a part in the life of nature.

Works Cited

Bryant, William. "Thanatopsis." Adventures in American Literature. Ed. Francis
Hodgins, Et Al. Pegusus edition. Dallas: HBJ, 1989. 153-154
Emerson, Ralph. "of Nature." Adventures in American Literature. Ed. Francis
Hodgins, Et Al. Pegusus edition. Dallas: HBJ, 1989. 215-216
Thoreau, Henry. "from Walden." Adventures in American Literature. Ed. Francis
Hodgins, Et Al. Pegusus edition. Dallas: HBJ, 1989. 235-237
Crane, Stephen. "The Red Badge of Courage." Bantam. New York, NY: 1983

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