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Ralph Waldo Emerson was first known as an orator but converted many of his orations in to essays. This his second books was first published in 1841 and includes the famous essay, “Self-Reliance.” His aunt called it a “strange medley of atheism and false independence,” but it gained favourable reviews in London and Paris. This book, and its popular reception, more than any of Emerson’s contributions to date laid the groundwork for his international fame. (source: Wikipedia)
This address was delivered at Cambridge in 1837, before the Harvard Chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, a college fraternity composed of the first twenty–five men in each graduating class. The society has annual meetings, which have been the occasion for addresses from the most distinguished scholars and thinkers of the day.