Incorporating seven characteristics of transcendentalism thought into the dead poets society

Essay by sarahthatisallHigh School, 10th gradeA+, February 2003

download word file, 4 pages 3.0

Downloaded 41 times

"Live every moment of life to its fullest and live in the present"

Upon first meeting their new literature teacher, Professor Keating, the boys of Welton Academy are introduced to the concept of Carpe Diem, which, in leman's terms, means to 'seize the day'. Making the boys curious about him from the first time he steps into the room, he makes a lasting impression when he leads them into a corridor filled with old school pictures and trophies. He explains to them that, just like the boys in the pictures, they are teenagers filled with potential and life. And, just like the boys in the picture, they too will one day die. The point is to stress that one needs to 'make his life extraordinary' and to embrace death with no regrets. Transcendentalists believed that life should actually be lived, and not wasted.

"Triumph of feeling and intuition over reason"

Transcendentalists strongly emphasized that feeling and intuition overpowered reason and logic.

They believed that you should trust your heart. Knox Overstreet pretty much took this concept to the maximum with his interpretation of Carpe Diem. Knox's entire existence revolved around the object of his desires, Chris. Taking the boys of the Dead Poet's Society and Mr. Keating's advice, he follows his heart rather than his reason and calls her for the first time, leading to an invitation to a party she was going to be at. He, knowing what kind of trouble he can get in, ignores his logic and tries to follow his feelings at the party and makes a move on her. Although he got beaten up, in the end, Chris ended up showing feelings for Knox. For him, everything always turned out for the better, which is a very romantic view of life.

"Reject any...