We've looked at the Romantics' influence on Transcendentalism, worked on defining this slippery concept of "Transcendentalism" itself, read some of Emerson and Thoreau, and looked at two filmic examples of Transcendentalism. We also discussed how, as our nation started to form its identity, the Transcendentalists came to represent one strand, standing in opposition to the tradition and authority of the Puritans.
So what do you think? As we prepare to compose an end-of-quarter answer to the our guiding question "What is America(n)?," what do you think of the Transcendentalist answer to that question? And do use your historical perspective--over 150 years later, has this Transcendentalist strand been good for America? Bad? Both?
In your response, first define just what you think that Transcendentalist answer is, and then discuss your attitude toward that answer. You should make specific references to the works we studied (this is where your notes and the TodaysMeet backchannel should be useful).