American Literature Pg. 94- 109 notes

American Literature Pg. 94- 109 notes

Who owns the LAND?
• Native Americans: caretakers not owners
• British colonist: attackers and land aggressors
• What entitles people to claim land as their own?

What makes an EXPLORER?
• Early explorers traveled for many reasons: to gain glory for them or their countries, to find gold or other riches, to discover new routes for travel and trade
• Yet, none of these reasons makes going into the unknown worth the risk
• What is it that causes people to seek out the unknown?

Are people basically GOOD?
• Puritan settlers thought- human beings were doom to fiery eternity unless saved by God
• Others believed that humans were good creatures at the core and we should proclaim the goodness
• Are people destined always to struggle against their basest instincts? Or are they fundamentally good— and capable of becoming even better?

Who has the right to RULE?
• European kings and queens believed they had a God-given right to rule for centuries
• But in the Age of Enlightenment this was questioned along with many other old assumptions
• Who really has the right to rule?

An Emerging Nation
• For some, early America was an experiment in hope
• Explorers - adventure
Settlers - religious freedom
Colonists - building communities
revolutionaries - a new government
• Writers recorded and interpreted the experiences of these ordinary people imagining and created and new country and unique way of life

The Meeting of Two Worlds
• The earliest American writers concentrated mainly on describing the challenging new environment and people
• They recorded a historical turning point: when the Europeans and Native Americans first crossed paths
• Writers commented on how Native Americans viewed one another and their land
• William Wood noted how the Native Americans took the 1st ship they saw as walking islands
• William Bradford noted that North America was a hideous, wild place full of hideously, wild people

From Colony to Country
• The first...

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