James Fenimore Cooper | Critical Essay by John P. McWilliams

This literature criticism consists of approximately 20 pages of analysis & critique of James Fenimore Cooper.
This section contains 5,959 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John P. McWilliams

Critical Essay by John P. McWilliams

SOURCE: "Red Satan: Cooper and the American Indian Epic," in James Fenimore Cooper: New Critical Essays, edited by Robert Clark, Vision and Barnes & Noble, 1985, pp. 143-61.

In the following essay, McWilliams contends that Cooper failed to employ the epic and romantic imagery that his contemporaries used to describe American Indians.

Americans who first conceived of heroic historical romance about the American Indian may have lacked facts about the red man, but they were familiar with conflicting preconceptions of him. Cooper, Bird, and Simms had all read historical sources which portrayed Indians as Homeric warriors living on in the American forest. They were also drawn in varying degrees to the Enlightenment belief that the red man had been Nature's noble savage, Man in all his unspoiled virtue. To a generation raised on Homer and Milton, yet exposed to...

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This section contains 5,959 words
(approx. 20 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John P. McWilliams
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