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4.10.8: Reading and Review Questions

  • Page ID
    63391
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    1. In “The American Scholar,” what role does nature play in an individual’s development? How does Emerson reconcile nature with scholarship and intellect? What relation do American scholars (or Americans in general) have with nature?
    2. What characteristics does Emerson ascribe to the American Scholar (as opposed to a scholar from another nation)? Why? What are their peculiar duties? How, like a hero of a Greek epic, does the American Scholar reflect American virtues?
    3. In “Divinity School Address,” how does Emerson define virtue? How, if at all, does he reconcile his definition with religious doctrine and theology? How are Unitarian clergy to model virtue?
    4. In “Divinity School Address,” what are the failures of “historical Christianity” to which Emerson brings attention? Why does he consider them failures?
    5. In “Self-Reliance,” on what grounds does Emerson promote self-reliance, self-trust, non-conformity, and false consistency? What benefits does self-reliance offer, and how? What ills does it correct, and how?

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