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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looking for another Gospel?, 7 Dec 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.)) (Paperback)
There's no need to say much about this. It's Emerson. He is revered as our "First Man" in America--our truly Original Adam in the Morning. It has been said that all thinking in America since Emerson is either with him or against him. He inspires in both directions--Melville mocked him and Eliot scorned him while Dickinson learned from him and Whitman proclaimed that Emerson brought him to a boil. This divided reaction continues to this day (note the reverance of critic Harold Bloom and philosopher Stanley Cavell and at the same time the derision of John Updike and Robert Penn Warren) though he is certainly back in academic vogue.
This combination of two L of A editions (Essays and Poems are published separately) creates a book that can be your daily bread. This is essential Emerson at your fingertips. The actual book is voluminous yet not cumbersome--and though thick, it handles easily and wears well--perfect for compulsive thumbing through.
Here are some of my favorite books about Emerson, biographical and critical: "Emerson: The Mind on Fire" by Robert D. Richardson is by far my favorite biography (it is still said that the work by Ralph Rusk is the definitive "factual" bio); Bloom's work is peppered with essays on Emerson, "Agon" is a nice collection as is "Figures of Capable Imagination"; Richard Poirier writes with a constant eye toward Emerson ("The Renewal of Literature", "Poetry and Pragmatism") as does Stanley Cavel ("Conditions Handsome and Unhandsome", "This New Yet Unapproachable America"); and I really like a book by Mark Edmundson called "Towards Reading Freud : Self-Creation in Milton, Wordsworth, Emerson, and Sigmund Freud". And there are hundreds of critical studies (probably thousands) to consult--the classic being Stephen Whicher's "Freedom and Fate" (but I like Jonathan Bishop's "Emerson on the Soul" better).
Enough rambling. Emerson continues to be startling at every turn--you may think you know him ("Hitch your wagon to a star", "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds" etc.), but he will not be penned in.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mighty thoughts that can shake your life!, 16 July 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.)) (Paperback)
This is one of the greatest books I have ever read. I know that many people don't like to read essays of any kind, but all I can say is that Ralph Waldo Emerson is simply different! Nobody has the gift to write essays and analyze life like him.
His words and ideas are so powerful and deep that we soon realize that they didn't come only from a brilliant mind, but also from a warm-hearted soul!
That's exactly what this book is about: Its sentences break through your brain and penetrate right into your soul! Emerson's optimistic view on human beings and life can only reinforce our courage in mankind and, especially, in ourselves!
What else can I say? His speech is direct, he defends all the good values, tell us to have confidence in ourselves and show us that passing through life with dignity is a matter of choice and courage, and that it simply doesn't change with time. It was like this a thousand years ago, it will probably follow the same rules a thousand years f! ! rom now.
This is the book I grab to comfort my spirit when I'm having difficult times... :) It is a guide that make us believe that anything is possible when we really want it! " Self-Reliance ", one of the essays inside this book, is a masterpiece in its own and I believe it should be studied in every high school, instead some of the crap we are usually obliged to read!
This book can shape your spirit and your mind. It is also possibly THE BEST self-help book you could ever own and, yet, a great literary work.
I would rate this book as ageless and I'm sure the future generations will be still interested in it, such as are we in those ancient Greek and Roman texts.
This is precious culture and food for your soul as a bargain! Do not waste more time. READ IT!!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Emerson, 6 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.)) (Paperback)
Most interesting. Will be left around the house to pick up and read and various intervals over the next months. Needs time to absorb.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 15 Sep 2014
This review is from: Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.)) (Paperback)
all good
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Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.))
Emerson: Essays and Poems (Everyman's Library (Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.)) by Ralph Waldo Emerson (Paperback - 1 May 1995)
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