The Social Self: Hawthorne, Howells, William James, and Nineteenth-Century Psychology (Institutional Studies)

The Social Self: Hawthorne, Howells, William James, and Nineteenth-Century Psychology (Institutional Studies)

Joseph Alkana


American literary background of the nineteenth-century as a clash among individualistic writers and a conformist society. In The Social Self, Joseph Alkana argues that this type of dichotomy misrepresents the perspectives of many authors.

Sudden alterations as a result of the economic revolution, city improvement, elevated immigration, and local conflicts have been threatening to fragment the neighborhood, and such writers as Nathaniel Hawthorne, William James, and William Dean Howells have been deeply excited by social team spirit. Alkana persuasively reintroduces logic philosophy and Jamesian psychology as how you can know the way the nineteenth-century self/society challenge developed.

All 3 writers believed that introspection was once the correct route to the invention of fact. in addition they felt, Alkana argues, that such discoveries needed to be confirmed by means of society. In those refined readings of Hawthorne's brief tales and The Scarlet Letter, Howells's utopian Altrurian romances, and James's The rules of Psychology, it turns into visible that characters who isolate themselves from the neighborhood accomplish that at significant mental risk.

The Social Self hyperlinks those writers' curiosity in modern psychology to their problem for historical past and society. Alkana's argument that nineteenth-century expressions of individualism have been protective responses to the terror of social chaos appreciably revises the normal narrative of yankee literary tradition.

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