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Author Downes, Paul, 1965-

Title Democracy, revolution, and monarchism in early American literature / Paul Downes
Published Cambridge, U.K. ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2002
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Description 1 online resource (xii, 239 pages)
Series Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture ; no. 130
Cambridge studies in American literature and culture ; no. 130
Contents Monarchophobia: reading the mock executions of 1776 -- Crèvecoeur's revolutionary loyalism -- Citizen subjects: the memoirs of Stephen Burroughs and Benjamin Franklin -- An epistemology of the ballot box: Brockden Brown's secrets -- Luxury, effeminacy, corruption: Irving and the gender of democracy -- Afterword: the revolution's last word
Summary Paul Downes combines literary criticism and political history in order to explore responses to the rejection of monarchism in the American revolutionary era. Downes' analysis considers the Declaration of Independence, Franklin's Autobiography, Crevecoeur's Letters From An American Farmer, and the works of America's first significant literary figures including Brockden Brown, Washington Irving and James Fennimore Cooper. He claims that the new democratic American state and citizen inherited some of the complex features of absolute monarchy, even as they were strenuously trying to assert their difference from it. In chapters that consider the revolution's mock execution of George III, the Elizabethan notion of the 'king's two bodies', and the political significance of the secret ballot, Downes points to the traces of monarchical political structures within the practices and discourses of early American democracy. This is an ambitious study of an important theme in early American culture and society
Analysis Electronic books
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 223-236) and index
Notes Print version record
Subject American literature -- Revolution, 1775-1783 -- History and criticism
Democracy in literature.
Monarchy in literature.
Politics and literature -- United States -- History -- 18th century.
Revolutionary literature, American -- History and criticism.
Revolutions in literature.
United States -- History -- Revolution, 1775-1783 -- Literature and the revolution.
United States -- Intellectual life -- 18th century.
Genre/Form Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2002017399
ISBN 0511020554 (electronic bk.)
0511120435 (electronic bk.)
0511485484 (ebook)
0521813395 (hbk.)
9780511020551 (electronic bk.)
9780511120435 (electronic bk.)
9780511485480 (ebook)
9780521813396 (hbk.)