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ERIC Number: ED284232
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1987-Aug
Pages: 40
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Oversoul of Reform: Horace Greeley and New England Transcendentalism.
Whitby, Gary
Entries in the New York "Tribune" suggest that editor Horace Greeley and his writing were part of New England transcendentalism. This was manifested in Greeley's interest in poetry, newspaper publishing, reform, and an overall practical social idealism. He was long associated with both literary figures and reform movements, and as a Universalist, his religious ideas were similar to those of the transcendentalists. Similarly, he believed in individual enlightenment, in society as a formation of individual consciences subject to the "Omniscient Beneficence" (or Oversoul), and in individual freedom. Transcendental mysticism and imagination are exhibited in the writings of the "Tribune" as well, all of which advocated social change based on intuitive perceptions and imaginative new life styles. Greeley's Fourierism, a supposed cosmic force based on what Fourier called "attraction," which leads individuals to adopt the kind of labor they are suited to and which eventually forms successful "associations" based on preferences, is a doctrine which illustrates this. Greeley's romantic Christian socialism saw God as a divine mix of deistic and romantic principles, the universe running by natural law but needing reform. His beliefs led him to become an advocate of social good, brotherly love and cooperation, and the reconstruction of society in these terms. (Nine pages of notes are included.) (JC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A