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中文論文名稱 良心至上:梭羅政治社會思想研究
英文論文名稱 Upholding Manhood: A Study of Henry D. Thoreau's Social Criticism and Political Thought
校院名稱 淡江大學
系所名稱(中) 美國研究所碩士班
系所名稱(英) Graduate Institute of American Studies
學年度 95
學期 1
出版年 96
研究生中文姓名 陳育忠
研究生英文姓名 Yu-zhong Chen
學號 693220112
學位類別 碩士
語文別 英文
口試日期 2007-01-05
論文頁數 103頁
口試委員 指導教授-林耀福
委員-梁欣榮
委員-蔡振興
中文關鍵字 神性  自我改革  個人良知  道德  人性  公民不服從  非暴力 
英文關鍵字 divine nature  self-reform  higher law  individual conscience  moral obligation  morality  humanity  civil disobedience  nonviolence 
學科別分類 學科別社會科學區域研究
中文摘要 梭羅除了因為對自然的書寫及提倡生活實踐的人生觀聞名於世外,另ㄧ篇文章《公民不服從》亦建立了他在政治思想領域中的聲名。此篇文章為梭羅表達個人政治思想及其政治理念的經典之作。梭羅也是一位著名十九世紀超越主義論者,而欲探究影響其政治思想的形成因素為何,我們必須先了解梭羅當時所處的時代背景。超越主義提倡人人應過簡樸生活且必須終於遵從自己的良心。梭羅的入獄以及充分表達其政治思想與理念的著作《公民不服從》也是因為梭羅秉持恪守個人良心原則所做的行動。服從良心的原則為梭羅政治思想中的核心思想,亦是檢驗對錯的最後評判。
因抗稅入獄而帶來的影響亦因為梭羅的政治著作《公民不服從》而持續發燒。它描寫美國南方各州邪惡的蓄奴制度以及此邪惡制度竟得以在美墨戰後獲得的新領地施行使得梭羅深惡痛絕。梭羅的抗稅入獄是一種公開反對違背個人良心原則的不正義法律。簡言之,梭羅相信個人良知凌駕於ㄧ切政府權力。梭羅認為決定政府政策的對錯根據是良心。假如失此依據,最終我們的良知道德便會因此變成麻木不仁。因此,梭羅導出人人皆有反抗那些要求他們違背道德良心而只效忠不義政府的權利。
雖然梭羅極力推廣良心的至高無上性且致力讚揚人之德性,實際上,要求人們致力遵從最高道德標準並不符合正常的人性。事實上,透過深入的分析我們可以發現,一些在梭羅思想形塑過程中發生的問題導致了理想的低可行性。當他強調道德絕對主義及服膺良心原則的必要性的同時,他卻忽略了政治現實以及社會中人對經濟的基本需求。這可能也是在實踐其理想時所遇到的根本困境。此外,梭羅絕對道德性理想也許和他忽略人們對其理想可行性的質疑有關,又或許和他無法在理想與現實之間拿捏得當有相當關連。
本論文共分五個部份。緒論部份說明筆者的研究動機與目的、研究方法、研究限制以及研究架構。第一章介紹梭羅的生長背景及探討形塑其政治思想的影響因素。第二章分析梭羅的政治著作來探究其對個人自由的追尋、道德權力的實踐、政治思想和理想,及其自身對眾生的人道關懷。第三章除了指出梭羅政治理想中的問題與缺陷之外,也分析梭羅理想的可行性及討論其政治思想對後世的影響。最後於結論部份討論梭羅政治思想啟蒙影響後世的非暴力抗爭哲學所做出的貢獻。
英文摘要 Thoreau is famous for his writing about nature and philosophy of life, but it is also important to remember that Civil Disobedience that builds up his reputation in the wider political world. Civil Disobedience is the representative work which best exemplifies his political thought and ideals. To understand the factors influencing the shaping of Thoreau’s political thinking, it is necessary to examine both Thoreau the man and the transcendentalist background. Thoreau is a famous transcendentalist writer in the nineteenth century. Transcendentalism proposes that mankind should lead a peaceful and simple life by transcending the trap of civilization and everyone must be free to act according to his conscience. Thoreau listens to the inner voice of his conscience, a voice all men possess but few men follow. His strict obedience of the individual conscience, which is the key to Thoreau’s political philosophy, is what leads to his incarceration and to Civil Disobedience. The individual is the final judge of right and wrong.
The incarceration has enduring effects through his political writing Civil Disobedience, which is written after the outbreak of the Mexican-American war and protests both slavery and war. Civil Disobedience describes the Mexican-American war as an evil comparable to slavery because the war is doubly offensive to Thoreau because it permits slavery in the new territory. The protest is an open defiance of the unjust law that violates his conscience. In short, Thoreau believes the government authority should never rank above the individual conscience. If we do not act according to our conscience and distinguish right from wrong, Thoreau contends that it is highly probable that we will eventually lose the capacity to make the distinction and become, instead, morally numb. Therefore, Thoreau maintains that everyone has a right to resist the state if the state demands a person’s first allegiance by asking him to violate his moral conscience and participate in any injustice.
Despite Thoreau’s endeavor to promote the supremacy of the individual conscience and even to achieve the glorification of man’s morality, evidence shows that man’s complete subjection to the highest moral standards contradicts with their normal human nature. In fact, through an in-depth analysis, we will discover that there may be some problems in the formation of Thoreau’s ideas that results in the low feasibility of his ideals. While he emphasizes so much the necessity of obeying the moral absolutism and of subjecting to the law of conscience, he neglects the political reality and men’s economic needs in his ideal of absolutism of morality in society, which are fundamental dilemmas in its realization. For the common man, in general, achieving the highest moral standards is impossible and unattainable. We may even say that the low practicability of Thoreau’s ideal of absolute morality actually has something to do with his ignorance of man’s doubts about its feasibility and his inability to make some compromise between his ideals and realities.
In this thesis, Introduction explains objectives, research method, research restriction, data resources and framework of this study. Chapter One begins with Thoreau’s related information and discusses factors that influence the formation of his political thinking. Chapter Two analyzes Thoreau’s political writings to explore Thoreau’s pursuit of individual liberty, practice of moral right, political ideas and ideals, and humanitarian concern. Chapter Three not merely discusses with what kinds of flaws and problems in Thoreau’s ideals, but also analyzes the practicability of his ideals and discusses Thoreau’s enduring legacy. The final part of this thesis is the conclusion which evaluates Thoreau’s contribution for the tradition of the philosophy of nonviolence and his long-lasting influence on the after ages.
論文目次 Introduction…………………………………………………………1

Chapter One
Thoreau in the Matrix of New England Transcendentalism…8
I. Thoreau’s Environment……………………………8
II. Factors influencing Thoreau’s Thought………20

Chapter Two
Thoreau’s Political Ideas and Ideals……………………34
I. The Principled Self-Reformer………………………34
II. The Political and Social Nonconformist…………42
III. The Abolitionist and the Humanitarian…………50

Chapter Three
Thoreau’s Political Ideals and Its Practicability………70
I. The Conscientious Pursuer of Ideals…………………70
II. The Legacy of Thoreau……………………………………79

Conclusion………………………………………………………………95
Works Cited……………………………………………………………101
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Chernus, Ira, American nonviolence: the history of an idea. New York: Orbis, 2004.
Emerson, Ralph Waldo, “Nature,” The Norton Anthology of American Literature. 6th ed. Nina Baym, et al. New York: Norton, 2003.
Ferguson, Sarah, “Cindy Sheehan Pledges Civil Disobedience Campaign,” Oct. 19, 2005. .
Gougeon, Len, “Thoreau and Reform.” The Cambridge companion to Henry David Thoreau. Ed. Joel Myerson. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1995.
Grimes, Alan Pendleton, American political thought. N.Y.: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1960.
Harding, Walter, The Days of Henry Thoreau: A Biography. New York: Dover, 1982.
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Hayden, Tom, “The Lasting Legacy of Participatory Democracy,” Apr. 10, 2006. .
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Sattlemeyer, Robert, “Thoreau and Emerson.” The Cambridge companion to Henry David Thoreau. Ed. Joel Myerson. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1995.
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Steigerwald, David, The sixties and the end of modern America. New York: St. Martin’s, 1995.
Thoreau, Henry David, “A Plea for Captain John Brown.” The Higher Law: Thoreau on Civil Disobedience and Reform. Ed. Wendell Glick. Princeton: Princeton UP, 2004.
---. “Resistance to Civil Government.” The Higher Law: Thoreau on Civil Disobedience and Reform. Ed. Wendell Glick. Princeton: Princeton UP, 2004.
---. “Slavery in Massachusetts.” The Higher Law: Thoreau on Civil Disobedience and Reform. Ed. Wendell Glick. Princeton: Princeton UP, 2004.
---. “Walden.” The Norton Anthology of American Literature. 6th ed. Vol. B. Ed. Nina Baym, et al. New York: Norton, 2003.
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Wood, James Playsted, Henry David Thoreau: the man who would be free. New York: Pyramid, 1969.
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