Who Is Ralph Waldo Emerson?
What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think(Ralph Waldo Emerson). Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American philosopher and spokesman for the American Transcendentalists. The Transcendentalists movement consists of a group of New England romantic writers, who believed that intuition was the means to truth.
In other words, to be true to yourself. In 1841, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote an essay, Self-Reliance, to introduce the American Transcendentalists. In his essay to the public regarding the Transcendentalists movement, Ralph Waldo Emerson is attempting to express the idea of being your own person instead of just copying others.
In the beginning of his essay, Emmerson is expressing how one should value their true self instead of being someone they are not. To demonstrates, he uses various analogies to reveal, There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better for worse as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him till.. (Emerson). By comparing envy to ignorance, Emerson feels that those who have desire and jealousy to be someone else are ignorant to that person’s problems. Therefore, they should not want to be someone else, for no one is perfect and have their own issues. He views imitation as suicide because imitating someone would mean killing your own voice, ideas, and creativity. Emmerson continues by stating that the wide universe is filled with people imitating and relying on others, and people should use what they are given to build their own originality. Emerson’s use of analogy and repetition is to encourage readers to appreciate their true self and to feel confidence or powerful within themselves,
Later in his essay, Emerson writes in a candid tone to let readers know that not everyone would be accepting to their true self. For instance, using descriptive language, he divulges:
For nonconformity the world whips you with its displeasure. And therefore a man must know how to estimate a sour face. The bystanders look askance on him in the public street or in the friend’s parlour. If this aversation had its origin in contempt and resistance like his own, he might well go home with a sad countenance; but the sour faces of the multitude, like their sweet faces, have no deep cause, but are put on and off as the wind blows and a newspaper directs. (Emmerson)
Emerson uses the word displeasure to show readers that the world will and will always judge those who decide to expose their true self instead of changing themselves in order to fit in with society. He then states that people should not let a sour face change who they really are. Emmerson expresses that these judgmental people are everywhere even among their own friends. Throughout the essay, Emerson uses descriptive language to help readers understand that people will keep criticizing them until they change to fit society’s standards. He uses descriptive words hoping readers will continue to take what the universe gave them to mold themselves into the person who they really are because at the end of the day the judgmental stares fade away into nothing.
Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay, Self-Reliance, influences readers by advising them to find self-indepence instead of obeying social expectations. He uses analogies, descriptive language, and repetition to teach the importance of self reliance and the challenging obstacles that come with. Emerson believes that conformity kills individualism and encourages readers to avoid conformity in order to reach self confidence. Also, Emmerson desires every person to self confident and different. His essay will forever continue to affect readers by giving them not only hope, but the confidence to express themselves truly.
Contents 1 Intro/Characters: 2 Setting: 3 Plot: 4 Theme: 5 Character Analysis: Intro/Characters: The protagonist of this book is Liesel Meminger. This is because in the beginning of the book […]
Throughout the beginning of “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak, we see Rosa Hubermann as a mean and abusive mother to Liesel. She hits Liesel with her spoons and always […]
Hans Hubermann is a heartwarming instance in which survival is consistently portrayed. Hans’s character is depicted to ironically develop the theme of survival in The Book Thief because he is […]
In the late eighteenth century, romanticism swept through Europe and eventually the rest of the world, which ultimately played a key factor in influencing the philosophical movement known as transcendentalism […]
Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind Emerson was a widely known man who established himself as an intellectual and philosophical writer who advocated for […]
How important is self reliance to me and my future? In Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Self Reliance, he wrote about the importance of self reliance and how it’s crucial to the […]
Transcendentalism is the way of thought that society corrupts the individual and to escape this evil, corrupting society, man must live off the land and be self-reliant in nature. In […]
The ideology of conformity has been a prominent theme in American culture throughout history. Through the natural development of society, we are taught to live under the norms that are […]
Self-Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson is one of the most prominent essays in American history. Emerson has influenced and inspired many individuals through his notable points such as that one […]
What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think(Ralph Waldo Emerson). Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American philosopher and spokesman for the American Transcendentalists. The […]