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Early American Writing (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 28 Apr 1994

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Product details

  • Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (NZ) Ltd; Reissue edition (28 April 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140390871
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140390872
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 3.1 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 792,214 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Drawing materials from journals and diaries, political documents and religious sermons, prose and poetry, this book explores American myths of origin. The book includes American legends explaining the origins of the world, narratives of discovery by Columbus and Vespucci, and visions of a new paradise sketched by naturalists and other writers. Early settlers chronicle the establishment of a new society, and other selections offer insights into the foundation of the republic and reflect often contradictory views of both the problems and promise of the new nation.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is an invaluable collection of primary sources, as the early history of the Colonial Americas is related to us, in their own words, by the people who were there. It isn't just post-Columbian material though - Native American mythology gets a section of its own, and the European accounts begin with the Vikings. The sources speak to us from pre-Colonial days, through the settlement period, to the days of the early Republic - we have Columbus and Powhatan, Winthrop and Washington and Paine.

Anyone with even a passing interest in American history should have this book in their collection. Students of a number of disciplines will find this anthology of sources invaluable, and a handy work of reference which they will keep revisiting. Just try and get it before it goes out of print again, ok?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4 reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Excellent Compilation 24 Sept. 2005
By J. Hurley - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This text is an excellent compilation of early American works. Included are various Native American mythologies as well as a variety of other emerging literary voices from the New World. The book also pays special attention to the rising influence and power of Puritans and other religious leaders, as well as several key figures which helped mold the shape of the United States government.
Interesting 10 Sept. 2013
By HOwl - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was required for my AP Language class. With some help analyzing the texts, I feel that this is truly a wonderful book to have in any collection. There is a short summary and synopsis before each text in this book, which proves useful in providing some in context information.
Four Stars 14 Nov. 2014
By Rexis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great. used for school.
0 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Early American Writing 30 Sept. 2008
By Roxann G. Roque - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This seller is trustworthy. The item I purchased was it excellent condition and it arrived on time. I highly recommend this seller to anyone needing high quality books.
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