Critical Americans: Victorian Intellectuals and by Leslie Butler

By Leslie Butler

As questions of citizenship generate new debates for this new release of usa citizens, Thomas argues for revitalizing the position of literature in civic schooling. He considers four case reviews within which people are awarded in literature as ''the reliable citizen,'' ''the patriotic citizen,'' ''the autonomous citizen,'' and ''the immigrant citizen.'' He additionally offers research of the civic mythology surrounding Abraham Lincoln and the case of Ex parte Milligan. attractive present debates approximately civil society, civil liberties, civil rights, and immigration, Thomas attracts at the complexities of legislation and literature to probe the complexities of U.S. citizenship.

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The struggle against American slavery, in this view, constituted only one part of a much larger struggle on behalf of worldwide freedom. ‘‘God works for all. ’’ 37 Though Lowell had associated himself with the Garrisonian wing of abolition throughout the s, he was never comfortable with this group’s extremism and found that its members mixed a ‘‘little too much mustard’’ in their salad for his palate. 38 The waning of Lowell’s abolitionist zeal has often been explained as a consequence of the death of his wife, Maria, in  and the removal of her important radical influence.

Those who voted Republican along with Curtis exhibited a clarifying sense of duty that, one way or another, he thought, could not fail to set the country on a nobler path. Curtis’s  speech set him on a new personal course at the same time that it roused others to action. With this speech, Curtis first expressed his determination to engage in party politics and to act on his sense that a matured conception of a public duty necessarily went beyond writing the light-hearted travel narratives, novels, and satiric social sketches that had thus far made him famous.

Radicals who ignored what had come before were deprived of much that was worth saving, while ‘‘pseudo-conservatives’’ denied that Truth did not remain the same but continually evolved. The ‘‘Past’s blood-rusted key’’ would not open ‘‘the Future’s portal,’’ as the ‘‘Present Crisis’’ memorably put it, but this view did not imply a simple rejection of prior history. ’’ 40 Lowell’s eventual split from radical abolitionism also resulted from his sense 32 VICT ORIAN DUT Y that the campaign against slavery constituted only one part of a larger struggle for freedom.

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