In the summer of 1843, New Englander Margaret Fuller (1810-1850) set off with friends on a westward journey that would take her through the areas of the Great Lakes, Illinois and Wisconsin. Fuller kept copious notes while traveling, and during the eight months after her return home, she revised and enhanced her text and published it as a book entitled SUMMER ON THE LAKES, IN 1843. Fuller's text reflects a myriad of influences, especially from those most known for their Romantic writings. Jacques Jean Rousseau's ideas of The Noble Savage, Edmund Burke's theory of the sublime, Johann Wolfgang Goethe's scientific studies and Ralph Waldo Emerson's description of the ideal American are some of the influences from which Fuller draws her ideas. Through Fuller's vast knowledge of language, literature, history and science, she creatively and reflectively utilizes these and other Romantic influences to discuss two major subjects in her text: the treatment of Native Americans who are being forced to evacuate the Great Lakes area, and the character of the American immigrant that she believes would be best suited to replace the disappearing population.
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