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Nature [Kindle Edition]

Ralph Waldo Emerson
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

<DIV>Ralph Waldo Emerson, the son of a Unitarian minister and a chaplain during the American Revolution, was born in 1803 in Boston. He attended the Boston Latin School, and in 1817 entered Harvard, graduating in 1820. Emerson supported himself as a schoolteacher from 1821-26. In 1826 he was "approbated to preach," and in 1829 became pastor of the Scond Church (Unitarian) in Boston. That same year he married Ellen Louise Tucker, who was to die of tuberculosis only seventeen months later. In 1832 Emerson resigned his pastorate and traveled to Eurpe, where he met Coleridge, Wordsworth, and Carlyle. He settled in Concord, Massachusetts, in 1834, where he began a new career as a public lecturer, and married Lydia Jackson a year later. A group that gathered around Emerson in Concord came to be known as "the Concord school," and included Bronson Alcott, Henry David Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Margaret Fuller. Every year Emerson made a lecture tour; and these lectures were the source of most of his essays. Nature (1836), his first published work, contained the essence of his transcendental philosophy , which views the world of phenomena as a sort of symbol of the inner life and emphasizes individual freedom and self-reliance. Emerson's address to the Phi Beta Kappa society of Harvard (1837) and another address to the graduating class of the Harvard Divinity School (1838) applied his doctrine to the scholar and the clergyman, provoking sharp controversy. An ardent abolitionist, Emerson lectured and wrote widely against slavery from the 1840's through the Civil War. His principal publications include two volumes of Essays (1841, 1844), Poems (1847), Representative Men (1850), The Conduct of Life (1860), and Society and Solitude (1870). He died of pneumonia in 1882 and was buried in Concord.</div>

Product Details

  • File Size: 125 KB
  • Print Length: 48 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1468114344
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004TQ46CE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,314 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
49 of 51 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition
Originally published in 1836, Ralph Waldo Emerson's essay Nature had a profound impact on American literature and philosophy. Prior to this work, the arts of the Western world had been built upon centuries of cultural history, and American culture was little more than a redundant reflection of past civilizations. Emerson argued that, with the abundance of raw, untouched wilderness in the New World, American writers, artists, and scholars possessed a rare opportunity to build a uniquely American aesthetic, based not on the achievements of the past but drawn directly from nature itself. At the time, the concept of nature was little developed in the public psyche. Most people thought of nature simply as the provider of meat, produce, and timber. Emerson championed the appreciation of nature not only for the value of its commodities but also for the sake of its moral and spiritual benefits.

The philosophy that Emerson espouses in Nature reads like a mixture of the dualistic idealism of Plato and the monistic pantheism of Spinoza. Like Plato, Emerson believed that there is a higher reality, a divinity, that exists outside of the physical universe we perceive with our senses. Emerson refutes the assertion by many idealists, however, that sensual nature is simply a deceptive illusion which conceals true reality from us. Instead, Emerson insists that nature is the medium through which the divine speaks to us, that it is only by observing and loving nature that we can truly experience God. By accumulating empirical data of the natural world around us, we are able to ascertain the laws which govern the universe. It is through this exercise of reason that mankind is truly able to glimpse the divine.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ralph rules May 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Struggling through Emerson and Thoreau in high school was a chore, and I never bothered to differentiate between them. With a few years and an English lit degree behind me, I've got more time to analyze them. And Emerson was clearly the man, hands down, with Thoreau a distant second at best. Emerson's essay on Nature holds up despite the passage of time and despite more than a century of changes in how we read, write and process the written word.

It even holds up in this imperfect Kindle edition. The text was likely scanned in as there are a few errors in spelling and spacing that commonly occur with OCR scanning software. Not a lot of them--the text was probably proofread--but a few glitches were missed. I can't complain beyond that, however. It's a free download.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get your painbrush and easel ready May 14, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
In his book, Emerson explains how we can find awe and delight in the natural world when we don't lose sight of our inner child. He writes, "The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common."

Emerson's book was so popular that it started a cultural movement in America in which people celebrated America's inspiring beauty through the painting of landscapes. Artist colonies were formed. Artists shared the belief that the landscape was God's expression on earth and that spending time in the outdoors drew the individual closer to God.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nature and its throne. February 12, 2013
By Granny
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The thinking in this book Is very is very deep and makes you think of where you are in the big picture. I would recommend it to any seeking soul. *****
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Nature by Ralph Waldo Emerson November 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Ralph Waldo Emerson is a complete genius. He's the type of person that only comes along once, maybe, every generation, if even that. I've always considered Emerson to be the greatest genius of the 19h century. I give the 20th century to William S. Burroughs. Emerson's writings are so brilliant that there's no point to even dogear his pages. Every sentence deserves to be dogeared if it were possible. When reading Emerson it is like being clobbered over the head with the brilliance of each sentence. it's nonstop. His brilliance pours from every sentence. I have a book of his collected essays that literally has half (maybe even more) of the sentences underlined or highlighted. Emerson was so far ahead of his time that we're still not even caught up to him and his perceptions even 130 years since his death.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it February 12, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Love it....Love it! I have been trying to find the book, but I guess an electronic copy works better since I will forever own it on my kindle!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Philosophy + Poetry=Frustration July 4, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
In this book Emerson combines philosophy with poetry making everything hard to understand. When he does offer his opinions they are lost among a sea of examples he gives of various other viewpoints. Basically his ideas are that nature shoud be a part of our lives and we can learn much from it. But those types of ideas are lost in the frustrated presentation of his book. I honestly didn't see the point of the chapters and felt he was leaning toward egotism at was so confusing. It was like reading a science textbook swamped with the author's personal ideas like their favorite food and tv show. Honestly Emerson could have been clearer in stating his beliefs. I just read a book by Descartes and one by Ayn Rand, both were much clearer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Little Book, Big Impact In Fifty Pages Total August 3, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love this book because it goes beyond thinking of nature as a collection of interesting and beautiful rocks, soils, land formations, water bodies, plants and animals. Absorbing his few but deeply thought out words can help readers to think of nature as the great educator, deep knowledge of which can change our lives and enhance our impacts on the world. I also love that Emerson accomplishes this in only 50 pages!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars ... a Yoga" and Nellvill's "The Power of Awareness" is like a walk in...
Reviewing Emerson's "Nature" after slowly plowing through and ingesting nearly every line of Paramahansa Yogananda's "Autobiography of a Yoga" and Nellvill's... Read more
Published 21 days ago by Lawrence
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
This book is a very difficult and high level book to read
Published 26 days ago by Bo Chong
5.0 out of 5 stars My first Emerson read since my school days. Nature ...
My first Emerson read since my school days. Nature is Emerson's first book (1836) and a somewhat harsh review at the time coined the term
'Transcendentalist' ... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Steven J Weber
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent for the time that it was written.
Published 1 month ago by Justin L
5.0 out of 5 stars A Nature Lover's Library Must Have
Environmentalist need to memorize this. Put yourself in a point in history where city folk were fantasizing about living in the wilderness (and fearing it) and when scientific... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bob Farrell
5.0 out of 5 stars Nature bible
I've always loved this book and highly recommend to all who feel the spirit of God in nature.
Published 2 months ago by Holly S. Kennedy
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent. I have read some of his writings before.
Published 2 months ago by Dinesh C Pandey
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading
What can you say about one of the greatest classics?
Published 2 months ago by Janice Hover
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
The best work of transcendentalism ever!
Published 3 months ago by Henry Mao
5.0 out of 5 stars Nature - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Bought this for my son. A classic and he loves it.
Published 4 months ago by Michele
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