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Get Full Essay Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues. The Puritans brought with them a philosophy of life, which is popularly known as American Puritanism. A dominant factor in American life, Puritanism was one of the most enduring and shaping influences in American thought and American literature.
Without true understanding of Puritanism, there would be no real understanding of American literature and American culture. It led Americans to examine their beliefs, their world, and each other. It gave ordinary men and women a sense of purpose. It encouraged them to scrutinize issues in religion and in government and to speak out.
It helped to create in Americans a sense of duty to their God, their nation, and their fellow men.
It taught men and women to labor to be good and to judge others by their lives, not by their birth. At its height, Puritanism served as the dominant force in the creating of American literature. AAL, American Puritanism is a two-fold cultural heritage, one being religious and the other practical.
On the one hand, Puritanism is a highly strict religious doctrine. The Puritans were determined to find a place on the new continent where they could worship God in the way they thought true Christians should. When they arrived on the continent, they saw virgin land, virgin forests, vast expanses of wilderness, and therefore believed that they were sent by God for a definite purpose.
It was a new Exodus, ordained by God and foretold in the Bible, just as the Bible promised the creation of a New Jerusalem, in America. AAL, 8 On the other hand, Puritanism also has its practical aspect. Their struggle for survival and the movement of pushing the frontier with them as they moved further and further westward made them more and more preoccupied with business and profits.
They had to work hard in order to make a living and be ready for any misfortunes and tragic failures that might lie in wait for them.
As far as this respect is concerned, the Puritans learned a lot from the native Indians who helped them through the severe winters. The impact of Puritanism on American literature can be summarized into the following three categories: The Puritans dreamed of living under a perfect order and worked with hope and courage toward building a new Garden of Eden.
Therefore, they tended to look everything with a big amount of optimism. This went into the works of Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, and even James.
To the pious Puritans, the physical world was spiritual, nothing but a symbol of God. The world, therefore, was one of multiple meanings. In the works of Hawthorne, Melville and Poe, this developed itself into symbolism. They formed a distaste for art and for any manifestations of sensual beauty, therefore, the style of their writing was fresh, simple and direst, the rhetoric plain and honest, words simple and spare not fancy.
The use of metaphors was only to explain their opinions rather than to decorate. They wrote non-fictional prose instead of novels. They were good at writing history, too, and biography was once a popular form of literature. So did American literature.
In the Colonial Period, personal literature occupied a major position in the literary scene. In contend, they served either God or the expansion or both.Essay on Puritan Literature - Puritan values, ideas, and beliefs are evident in the works of Anne Bradstreet, William Bradford, and Jonathan Edwards.
Through her poetry, Bradstreet reveals her Puritan values and ideals. - The Puritans were a religious group that came to North America in search of religious freedom, and, in the process, greatly impacted the North American church, government, education, social mores, and economy. Puritanism has contributed to the way our day-to-day lives are carried on.
It has also contributed the way literature has transformed over the years. Many political and religious ideologies from Puritan literature are still upheld today. Works Cited Gelernter, David. “Puritanism lives. ” The American Enterprise 4 (): 25+. Student Edition.
The Influence of Puritanism on American Literature Essay Sample. The Puritans and PuritanismMost of the early settlers were Puritans, a group of serious, religious people . Puritan Influences on Modern American Culture and Thought. The ideas put forth by the Puritans are not simply an important starting point for American culture because they were the first in the country, but because they offered ways of thinking that are still ingrained in our culture today.
Other essays and articles in the Literature. The Puritans had a large influence in American literature and still influence moral judgment and religious beliefs in the United States to this day.
Puritan writing was used to glorify God and to relate God more directly to our world.