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Ethnicity and Cultural AuthorityFrom Arnold to Du Bois$
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Daniel G. Williams

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780748622054

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748622054.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

Realism, Ethnicity and the Nation

Realism, Ethnicity and the Nation

(p.72) Chapter 2 Realism, Ethnicity and the Nation
Ethnicity and Cultural Authority

William Dean Howells

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter presents a reconstruction of William Dean Howells's cultural thought and considers the challenges faced by his aesthetic theory, studying the potentially divisive forces of racial and linguistic differences and the tension between the aesthetically transcendent and socially committed conception of the man of letters. It also reveals a tension between two different views of literature, determining that Howells's conception of realism is the literary manifestation of ‘culture’ which he shared with Matthew Arnold.

Keywords:   cultural thought, aesthetic theory, William Dean Howells, racial differences, linguistic differences, man of letters, views of literature, realism, culture

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