24 February 2023 at 11:53:43 am
Mei Xiaohan, Ph.D. candidate of Department of English at Fudan University. His research field includes antebellum American literature, early American literature, trans-Atlantic literature and culture, Universal History and Historicism
Historical Representation，Disenchantment of History, and the End of Historiography: A Perspective to Understand Hawthorne’s Ideas of History
Nathaniel Hawthorne; Historical Romance; Disenchantment; Historical Representation; Metahistory
Throughout Nathaniel Hawthorne’s writing career, historical romance is one of the most important genres among his romance works. By selecting, editing, and arranging historical materials from the colonial period to the republic period, Hawthorne expresses abundant of historical representations and complicated ideas of history in his historical romances. After the interpretation of Hawthorne’s representative historical romances, we can find out a logical chain in Hawthorne’s historical concept distinctly: through the disenchantment of history, suspecting historical narratives and historiography, Hawthorne casts a strong suspicion on the seriousness and certainty of history. This multi-dimensional suspicion of history, in turn, further enriches the historical expressions in Hawthorne's works and enlarges aesthetic tensions in Hawthorne's historical romance.