By Dean Grodzins

Theodore Parker (1810-1860) was once a strong preacher who rejected the authority of the Bible and of Jesus, an excellent student who grew to become a well-liked agitator for the abolition of slavery and for women's rights, and a political theorist who outlined democracy as "government of all of the humans, via the entire humans, for all of the people--words that encouraged Abraham Lincoln. Parker had extra impression than an individual other than Ralph Waldo Emerson in shaping Transcendentalism in America.

In American Heretic, Dean Grodzins bargains a compelling account of the impressive first section of Parker's occupation, whilst this complicated man--charismatic but awkward, courageous but insecure--rose from poverty and obscurity to repute and notoriety as a Transcendentalist prophet. Grodzins finds hitherto hidden points of Parker's existence, together with his love for a girl who used to be no longer his spouse, and provides clean views on Transcendentalism. Grodzins explores Transcendentalism's non secular roots, exhibits the profound non secular and political concerns at stake within the "Transcendentalist controversy," and provides new insights into Parker's Transcendentalist colleagues, together with Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Bronson Alcott. He strains, too, the highbrow origins of Parker's epochal definition of democracy as executive of, by way of, and for the people.

The manuscript of this publication was once offered the Allan Nevins Prize through the Society of yank Historians.

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