Henry David Thoreau spent his life as an intellectual vagrant, jumping fences, pushing boundaries, and crossing borders. How, why, and to what end are the questions asked by contributors to this new volume of essays, whose work crosses national and disciplinary borders to think about Thoreau anew.
Deliberately invoking Thoreau’s commitment to “living a border life,” a life located between the world of nature and that of the polis, these varied essays explore the writer’s thinking and writing as situated not merely against, but across and beyond borders and boundaries—whether geographic, temporal, or spiritual. Arguing that literary texts are governed by mediation and dialogue, lines of force becoming lines of connection that entail complex patterns and interweavings, the contributors draw on methodologies that freely combine literary and philosophical approaches with cultural and political ones—in turn moving us beyond borders.
Contributors include the volume editors as well as Kristen Case, Danielle Follett, Rochelle Johnson, John J. Kucich, Daniel S. Malachuk, Henrik Otterberg, Sandra Harbert Petrulionis, Benjamin Pickford, David M. Robinson, Christa Holm Vogelius, and Michael C. Weisenburg.