Selected works by David Robinson


Apostle of Culture: Emerson as Preacher and Lecturer (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1982). A study of theological context of Emerson's early career.

Emerson and the Conduct of Life: Pragmatism and Ethical Purpose in the Later Work (Cambridge University Press, 1993). A study of the social and ethical emphasis of Emerson's later thought. [Chapter Nine "Toward a Grammar of the Moral Life," reprinted in Nineteenth Century Literary Criticism-98 (Gale, 2001)].

The Unitarians and the Universalists (Greenwood Press, Denominations in America Series No. 1, 1985). A history of Unitarianism and Universalism in America.

(Editor) William Ellery Channing: Selected Writings (Paulist Press, 1985).

(Editor)The Spiritual Emerson: Essential Writings (Beacon Press, 2003).

(Editor)The Political Emerson: Essential Writings on Politics and Social Reform. (Beacon Press, 2004).

Contributions to Books

"The Sermons of Ralph Waldo Emerson: An Introductory Historical Essay," in The Complete Sermons of Ralph Waldo Emerson, volume 1, ed. Albert J. von Frank (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1989), 1-32.

"Emerson and Religion," Historical Guide to Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. Joel Myerson (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), 151-77.

"Unitarianism," A Companion to American Thought, ed. Richard Wrightman Fox and James T. Kloppenberg (Blackwell Publishers, 1995), pp. 695-97.

"'A Religious Demonstration': The Theological Emergence of New England Transcendentalism," Transient and Permanent: The Transcendentalist Movement and Its Contexts, ed. Charles Capper and Conrad E. Wright (Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society and Northeastern University Press, 1999), 49-72.

"Transcendentalism and Its Times," The Cambridge Companion to Emerson, ed. Joel Porte and Saundra Morris (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999), 13-29.

"Emerson, Thoreau, Fuller and Transcendentalism," American Literary Scholarship 2000, ed. David J. Nordloh (Durham: Duke University Press, 2002), 3-27. [Essays under the same title, reviews of recent scholarship on New England Transcendentalism, annually since 1988].

"Transcendentalism," Encyclopedia of American Cultural and Intellectual History, ed. Mary Kupiec Cayton and Peter W. Williams 3 vols. (New York: Scribner, 2001), I: 413-426.

"American Romanticism," Encyclopedia of American Cultural and Intellectual History, ed. Mary Kupiec Cayton and Peter W. Williams 3 vols. (New York: Scribner, 2001), I: 401-412

"Grace and Works: Emerson's Essays in Theological Perspective," in American Unitarianism, 1805-1865, ed. Conrad E. Wright (Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society and Northeastern University Press and, 1989), 121-42.

"The Method of Nature and Emerson's Period of Crisis," in Emerson Centenary Essays, ed. Joel Myerson (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1982), 74-92.

"Fields of Investigation: Emerson and Natural History," in American Literature and Science, ed. Robert Scholnick (Lexington: University of Kentucky Press, 1992), 94-109.

"Emerson's 'American Civilization': Emancipation and the national Destiny," The Emerson Dilemma: Essays on Emerson and Social Reform, ed. T. Gregory Garvey (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2001), 221-33.

"The Written World: Place and History in Thoreau's 'A Walk to Wachusett,'" Thoreau's Sense of Place: Essays in American Environmental Writing, ed. Richard J. Schneider (Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2000), 83-92.

"Thoreau's 'Ktaadn' and the Quest for Experience," Emersonian Circles, ed. Robert Burkholder and Wesley T. Mott (Rochester: Univ. of Rochester Press, 1997), 207-23.

"Thoreau's 'Walking' and the Ecological Imperative," Approaches to Teaching Henry David Thoreau's Walden, ed. Richard Schneider (New York: MLA, 1996), 167-74.

"Diane Ackerman," American Nature Writers, Volume I, ed. John Elder (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1996), pp. 21-30.

Journal Articles

"Poetry, Personality, and the Divinity School Address," Harvard Theological Review, 82 (1989), 185-99.

"Emerson's Natural Theology and the Paris Naturalists: Toward a 'Theory of Animated Nature,'" Journal of the History of Ideas, 41 (1980), 69-88. Reprinted in Critical Essays on Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. Joel Myerson and Robert Burkholder (Boston: G.K. Hall, 1983).

"The Road Not Taken: From Edwards, Through Chauncy, to Emerson," Arizona Quarterly 48 (1992), 45-61.

"The Cultural Dynamics of American Puritanism" [review essay] American Literary History 6 (1994), 738-55.

"Unitarian History and the Unitarian Universalist Identity: The Work of Conrad Wright," Proceedings of the Unitarian Universalist Historical Soc. 22, 2 (1992-94), 1-11.

"The Legacy of Channing: Culture as a Religious Category in New England Thought," Harvard Theological Review, 74 (1981), 221-39.

"Margaret Fuller and the Transcendental Ethos: Woman in the Nineteenth Century," PMLA, 97 (1982), 83-98. [Reprinted in the Norton Critical Edition of Fuller, Woman in the Nineteenth Century, ed. Larry J. Reynolds, 1998].

"The Political Odyssey of William Henry Channing," American Quarterly, 34 (1982), 165-84.

"James and Emerson: The Ethical Context of The Ambassadors," Studies in the Novel, 10 (Winter 1978), 431-46.

"'Unchronicled Nations': Agrarian Purpose and Thoreau's Ecological Knowing," Nineteenth-Century Literature 48 (1993), 326-40.

"The Cost of a Thing" [on Thoreau] Oregon Humanities [special issue on definitions of wealth] Spring 2002, pp.46-49.

Electronic Source

Robinson, David M. (2003) Emerson: Religion After Transcendentalism. Retrieved December 30, 2004, from the Unitarian Universalist Association web site: