The Gothic Element in the Novels of Charles Brockden Brown Page: 17
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Til dCTfflC 10?a II AMERICA
nWtm til# Revolution oade m conscious separation between
American and English literature, America had already developed
a considerable literary activity* Among the fruits of thia
incipient literary oulture were a mass of religious writing,
much verse, some history, a few attempts at drama, and a large
amount of politieal and controversial writing.11 The type ©#
writing notioeably absent froa these early eontribations is
the novel. Although England had already produoed great novels,
Colonial Aoeriea had no novelist« 3inee interest had been
very active in poetry and draaa, the apparent neglect of the
prevailing literary fashion in England cannot be attributed
to lack of ambition and literary ability.
Two important aspects of early culture in America respon-
sible for the absence of the novel are the Puritan spirit which
still survived and the colonial spirit.
The Puritan scorn of the light forma of literature is well
known. Its survival is evident in these words of Timothy Dwlghti
Between the Bible and novels there is a gulf .
fixed whioh few novel readers are willing to pass.
The consciousness of virtue, the dignified pleasure
of having performed one's duty, the serene rexaejo-
branoe of a useful life, the hope of an interest in
Millie Demlng Loahe, The Mmll American Not el. p. 1.
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Cannon, Willie Jim. The Gothic Element in the Novels of Charles Brockden Brown, thesis, 1950; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc130235/m1/20/: accessed March 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .