essay2 - Snook 1 Thoreau's Murderous Thoughts By reminding...

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Snook Thoreau’s Murderous Thoughts By reminding his “countrymen that they are to be men first, and Americans at a late and convenient hour”, Henry Thoreau is signifying the underlying transcendentalist theme of his speech. Although he is addressing the people of Massachusetts on behalf of the Fugitive Slave Law, Thoreau is also advocating his personal political philosophy. As a passionate abolitionist to the anti-slave movement, Thoreau is able to exemplify the case of Anthony Burns as an injustice and flaw in the U.S. Constitution and thus “remind” his contemporaries to place their own values before that of an institution. Henry Thoreau was a renowned man. His radical yet scholarly journals gained him quite the local fame. However, Thoreau had never spoken publicly and usually dismissed any official addresses. Yet this specific event held many opportunities. It was Independence Day; A day of pride and patriotism for the United States. It was an opportune moment to expose the hypocritical values the constitution held. Thoreau understood that on that day “every humane and intelligent inhabitant… when he or she heard those bells and those cannons, thought not with pride of the events of the 19
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essay2 - Snook 1 Thoreau's Murderous Thoughts By reminding...

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