Looking for American Nationhood A Study of James Fenimore Cooper’s The Last of the Mohicans

Masoud Farahmandfar, Gholamreza Samigorganroodi


James Fenimore Cooper’s The Last of the Mohicans can be read as an outline for the contact (or clash) of many diverse cultures. This novel may also be seen as a story of the development of American national-racial identity. The present paper aims at examining Cooper’s classic novel in order to reveal the underlying discourse of race and nationhood. The paper will discuss Cooper’s idea of historical change and human progress, and will show how the teleological, stage-by-stage passage of history from savagery to civilization, from tribal communities to a unified nation, empowered by cultural appropriation, resulted in the formation of a fresh and inevitably hybrid American national identity.

Keywords:  Nation, Historical Progress, Race, Hybridity

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