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By John T. Irwin

The discovery of the Rosetta Stone and the following decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphics captured the imaginations of nineteenth-century American writers and supplied a focus for his or her speculations at the relationships among signal, image, language, and that means. via clean readings of vintage works through Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, Poe, Hawthorne, and Melville, John T. Irwin’s American Hieroglyphics examines the symbolic mode linked to the pictographs.

Irwin demonstrates how American Symbolist literature of the interval used to be prompted through what he calls "hieroglyphic doubling," using pictographic expression as a medium of either expression and interpretation. alongside the best way, he touches upon quite a lot of issues that involved humans of the day, together with the adventure to the resource of the Nile and ideas in regards to the starting place of language.

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American Hieroglyphics by John T. Irwin

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