Dark Romanticism (American Gothic) • A Response to Transcendentalism • The individual is prone to sin and self-destruction • Natural world is dark, decaying, mysterious • Individuals fail in their attempts at social reform
US History Timeline 1800-1860
The American Gothic Nathanial Hawthorne Edgar Allen Poe 1804-1864 1809-1849
Nathaniel Hawthorne • Born in Salem, Massachusetts • Original last name: Hathorne • Changed his name because he was a distant relative of Judge Hathorne, a presiding judge during the Salem Witch Trials. • Most famous novel: The Scarlet Letter • Also wrote numerous short stories
Nathaniel Hawthorne • Involved in politics (Pres. Pierce was a close friend) • Knew Thoreau and Emerson • Spent time in Concord, Mass • Died in his sleep in New Hampshire while on a tour with Pierce
The house of seven gables For, what other dungeon is so dark as one's own heart! What jailer so inexorable as one's self!
Edgar Allan Poe • Born in Boston, Mass. • Parents died when he was young • Raised by the Allan family in Va., but he was never formally adopted. • Spent some time in the military • In 1835, married 13 year-old cousin • Died in 1849—cause unknown (alcohol? Drugs? Rabies? Heart disease? Suicide?)
Edgar Allan Poe • Hours before Poe died, he was found delirious in the streets of Baltimore. He was incoherent and not even in his own clothes. • All medical records have been lost.
The Raven Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before; But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token, And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, "Lenore!" This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, "Lenore!"Merely this, and nothing more.