Horatio Alger

Horatio Alger jr

Horatio Alger jr. (* 13. January 1832 in Chelsea (today Revere), Massachusetts; † 18. July 1899 in Natick, Massachusetts) was an US-American author 19. Century. He was a prominent representative of the social viennaism during the golden age (1865-1900), which over 130 groschen novels wrote, in which it described, like boys out socially disadvantaged conditions by hard work, courage, certainty and employment for others at the American dream of prosperity and success sharings could.

Because they were badly written and there were many repetitions, the popularity of the novels sank, as soon as its target group became more fastidious. Nevertheless they were at the time of their emergence best-sellers and could with the books Marks of Twains in the popularity compete. When the American dream took forms, Alger gave million from young men, who lived at the edge of the society, hope for a better future.

Alger was born in Chelsea (today Revere), Massachusetts. His father, a unitarischer clergyman, wanted that he a minister become likewise. It went to Harvard, where it studied under Henry Wadsworth Longfellow with the intention of becoming a daily poet. After its study conclusion he found as journalist and a teacher work. After it was superseded by the army because of asthma, it undertook to become a journey to Europe, where it finally decided, clergyman. It accepted a place in Cape Cod , went 1866 however rather suddenly to New York, allegedly, in order to begin a career as an author. Mean after Algers death discovered recordings of the church that it became to excite without attention dismiss, because it had sexual relations with different boys of its municipality. (In the consequence today the New Yorker local federation of the North American one Boy Love Association, is a combination, the exemption from punishment for sexual relations between adults and children demands, after it designated.)

the removal to New York was a turning point in Algers career. It was pulled in immediately into the world of the young Stiefelputzer, newspaper boys and Hausierer become impoverished and took even a young Chinese immigrant named SAM as Mündel also into its home (SAM died some years later in an accident with a car). This world, connected with the strict education, which had enjoyed Alger, formed the basis for the first novel in its series over Ragged thick from 1867. The book was an immediate success and spurred Alger to a multiplicity of continuations and similar novels as Luck and Pluck (1869) and Tattered Tom (1871) on, all this the same topic treated: the ascent from rags tons of riches, from the plate scrubber to the millionaire. Horatio Alger, whose success formula was based on luck, courage and virtue, became actual the synonym for this category.

Finally all novels Algers are alike: A young boy rack ore itself off, in order to escape by hard work of the poverty. Critics point out that it is not the hard work, the boys protected its fate, but rather any unusually courageous or honest act, which brings him with a rich older gentleman in contact, which then as Mündel accepts him. The boy could e.g. a large sum of lost money return or someone from a umgestürzten car save, which made then a rich person on the boys - and its emergency - attentive. , This refleketiere Algers own patronizing attitude was maintained opposite the boys, those it to help tried.

Despite its remarkable literary output did not help its books Alger to wealth. It gave the majority of its money to homeless people to boys and became in some cases even from boys, those it to help tried, around his income to betrogen. Its books were 1899 nevertheless, when it died to find in almost any American home and in almost any American library. They do not like today any longer thus like to be, as they were it once, but the moral messages, them passing on, were an important factor in the development of the American dream in 20. Century.

At the time of its death Alger with its sister Augusta lived together. It destroyed all its personal documents in hope to avoid in the rigid atmosphere of the Viktoriani age a scandal.

Since 1947 the Horatio Alger Association lends annually a price for „outstanding personalities of our society to pursue those despite adversities success had “and scholarships to encourage „around young people their dreams with certainty and persistence “.

Horatio Alger in the literature

  • into the Ballade of the Typhoid Mary of Jürg Federspiel become the bad experiences of a young man in late 19. Century described, which tries, to live after Algers philosophy but one uses by the realms, which it helps, merciless. Thus, when he afterwards-carries his lost wallet for a wealthy man, this calls directly the police and brings it with it behind lattices.
  • The sieved chapter in Michael of moorland work Dude, where's my country? (dt. Full covering, Mr. Bush) carries the title “Horatio Algers must die” and attacks the plate scrubber myth in the USA, since this holds the poor and medium-size population in order to fight their rights and stronger control of the economy by the state.

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Wikisource: Horatio Alger (English) - source texts


 

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