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Emersons Optimism Unrealistic or a Search for Complete Understanding Great men great nations have not been boasters and buffoons but perceivers of the Terror of Life and have manned themselves to face it Fate Some readers critics especially believe Ralph Waldo Emersons writing to be unconvincing because of the optimism that seems fake and unrealistic Harold Bloom a very prominent figure in contemporary criticism said that Emerson was by no means the greatest American writer 1 Many critics whom some claim did not have an open mind said that Emersons style of writing lacked mentioning of evil Due to a lack of writing about evil some critics categorize Emerson as a dreamer and do not take Emerson seriously Many other people greatly admire Emersons style of transcendental writing They understand his optimism to be a search for complete answers to lifes difficult situations and inner peace In reality scholars will always have conflicting opinions when they are criticizing works of literature Emersons works are no different Even though there are people who believe that Emerson was unrealistic others believe there were reasons for his optimistic ideas Many critics consider Emersons thoughts unrealistic because he seemed to shield the thought of evil from his life Henry James said that there was a side of life as to which Emersons eyes were thickly bandaged Arvin 18 Since Emerson did not seem to delve beyond the surface of evil DH Lawrence thought that Emerson was old-fashioned due to his closed mind Konvitz and Whicher 46-47 Emerson seems to block out evil and only view the good things happening in his life and in nature Many other people because of Emersons lack of writings on evil do not view Emerson as serious Poirier 166 They often mock his writings making fun of his style and the way that he is overly optimistic Besides Piorier Hawthorne had respect for Emerson as a man but Emerson the transcendental
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