Coming Soon: The Transcendentalists and the American Renaissance

12 Feb

This Spring the PCPN reading group is crossing the Atlantic to our own continent, to discuss the Transcendentalists and the “American Renaissance” in literature—and their interpretation and appropriation in Continental thought. Don’t miss our meetings most Tuesday evenings (8:00-10:00pm) on the INTERNET! (login information below in red).

Pdfs of the readings can be found: HERE

Please bring either a digital or hard copy of the text with you to the discussion.

Time: 8:00pm-10:00pm
Location: Online


Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 896 2857 7809
Passcode: PCPNreadin

As a reminder, even though we have moved to thematic groups, there is no expectation that people participate in every week, so even if you can’t commit to the whole section, you are still more than welcome to join us when you can.


  • 02/23 – Emerson, Ralph Waldo. “Nature” in Transcendentalism a Reader
  • 03/02 – Cavell, Stanley. “Aversive Thinking: Emersonian Representations in Heidegger and Nietzsche”
  • 03/09 – Thoreau, Henry David. “Where I Lived, and What I Lived For” and “Solitude” in Walden 
  • 03/16 – Arsić, Branka. “Introduction: On Embodied Knowledge and the Deliberation of the Crow,” “Toward Things as They Are,” “Thinking with Geological Velocity,” “How to Greet a Tree?,” and “Contemplating Matter” in Bird Relics: Grief and Vitalism in Thoreau
  • 03/23 – Douglass, Frederick. “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”
  • 03/30 – Nielson, Cynthia. “Resistance is Not Futile: Frederick Douglass on Power Relations and Resistance ‘From Below’”
  • 04/06 – Melville, Herman. “The Portent”; Alcott, Louisa May. “With a Rose, That Bloomed on the Day of John Brown’s Martyrdom”; and Thoreau, Henry David. “A Plea for John Brown” in Transcendentalism a Reader
  • 04/13 – Smith, Ted A. “The Higher Law” in Weird John Brown: Divine Violence and the Limits of Ethics
  • 04/20 – Poe, Edgar Allan. “The Purloined Letter”
  • 04/27 – Lacan, Jacques. “Seminar on the Purloined Letter”
  • 05/04 – Dickinson, Emily.  The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, Poem # 67, 156, 185, 249, 254, 288, 326, 344, 435, 465, 650, 712, 772, 919, 926, 967, 1049, 1129, 1401 
  • 05/11 – Snediker, Michael. “Emily Dickinson’s Queer Pain: ‘One Claw Opon the Air’” in Queer Optimism
  • 05/18 – Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself” in Leaves of Grass
  • 05/25 – Deleuze, Gilles.  “Whitman” in Essays: Critical and Clinical
  • 06/01 – Melville, Herman. “Bartleby, the Scrivener”
  • 06/08 – Agamben, Giorgio. “Bartleby, or on Contingency” in Potentialities

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