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Plymouth Rock and the Pilgrims
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Plymouth Rock and the Pilgrims

Twain Mark

Проза, Классическая Проза

  • Язык: Английский

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To me this speech, besides being my favorite, is the best performance to look at to see what MT could and couldn't achieve morally as a humorist. It was delivered at the first annual dinner of Philadelphia's New England Society (the same kind of occasion as his 1882 toast "To Woman," although New York's New England Society was 77 years older). The various New England Societies scattered across the country (there was even one in Charleston) met on the anniversary of the arrival of an immigrant group -- the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock -- yet one of the forces behind the spread of these Societies throughout the nineteenth century was a reactionary resistance to the recurring waves of immigration from non-Anglo-Saxon ethnic groups. While the many speakers at these annual dinners paid homage to the Pilgrim Fathers, their filio-piety also nurtured their self-righteous belief that the descendants of such fathers were the "true" America, the legitimate heirs to the nation's places of privilege, the guardians of American culture across the dislocations of space and time.

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