it is by no means alone in meriting attention and praise. Edward L. Widmerâs Young America: The Flowering of Democracy in New York City (Oxford), a valuable extension of earlier work by Perry Miller, Mary Ryan, Sean Wilentz, and others, examines the group of ââultrademocratic,ââ post-Jacksonian intellectuals in New York who called themselves Young America. They were headed by John OâSullivan, the editor of the popular periodical Democratic Review, who is primarily remembered for coining the phrase ââManifest Destiny.ââ OâSullivanâs important magazine has long deserved the careful examination and informed literary and historical understanding that Widmer brings to it. On the other side of the political fence, so to speak, is Dorothy C. Broaddusâs Genteel Rhetoric: Writing High Culture in Nineteenth-Century Boston (So. Car.), which focuses on the more rariï¬ed, aristocratic attitude that came to be increasingly associated with Boston. The agenda of writers and intellectuals associated with this ââcity on the hillââ was designed to save the young republic from its most dangerous egalitarian impulses, but it failed amid the political turmoil of the times. Also important to an understanding of the Early Republic, Eric Wertheimer reminds us in his book Imagined Empires, were those civilizations that
American Literary Scholarship – Duke University Press
Published: Jan 1, 2001
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