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LITERATURA USA 18.10.2010 WYKŁAD Puritanism Perry Miller, Harvard University Professor claims that “without understanding of Puritanism there is no understanding of America” […]. It was an organization of man's whole life, emotional and intellectual “[…] it was a state of mind”.
Colonial and Puritan genres
Travel accounts, journals
Ships logs, reports to the explorers' financial backers
Captivity narratives - first person accounts of whites captured by Indians
Histories Biographies of important people
Religious and meditative poems
Clear, orderly organization
Elegy - (favourite genre) a poem of lamentation for the dead, with reflection on the departed life, mournful, melancholy. European strategies of the early explorers and settlers of the New World:
Converting Indians to Christianity
Comparing the New World with the Old World
Giving familiar names and labels to the strange things, i. e. giving names of Saints to places
Making the new - familiar or changing the New World John Smith (1580 - 1631) - Captain Smith
Very attractive, courageous and resourceful gentleman. To him more than to any other man was due the success of the first colony in Virginia. Jamestown - 1607 (a permanent colony).
Captain Smith named the coast of England from Cape Cod to the Penobscot River. In his maps he gave to the features of the coastline many of the English names that they bears to this day.
Captain Smith's Writings
“True Relation of Virginia” (1608) - historical account of the Jamestown settlement. “General History of Virginia, New England, and the Summer Isles” (1624) - contains the story of his rescue by a beautiful Indian princess.
“Description of New England” (1616) - fascinating “advertisements” which try to persuade the reader to settle in the New World, perform the necessary labour that would make the new plantations profitable.
Propagandistic presentation of the New World
Captain Smith's Style:
His works are not fully reliable.
He has overly vivid imagination, mixing facts and fantasy.
He seems to have embroidered his adventures.
1620 - Plymouth Colony - Separatists from Holland. Pilgrims or the Pilgrim Fathers.
Thousands of others came to America, especially during the Great Migration of 1630-40.
1620 - Mayflower - nicknamed the Ship of Hope, 65 day voyage across the wintry Atlantic Ocean. 50 Pilgrims (or Saints) as they called themselves led by William Bradford. The rest - seeking fortune and adventure. Saints called them “Strangers”.
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