The Transparent Eyeball

The Transparent Eyeball is a blog devoted to a collaborative study of Emerson and the innumerable circles of conversation in which he participated and in which we continue to find him. We welcome short—500-1,000 word—submissions from undergraduate and graduate students, teachers, independent scholars, early career as well as established scholars, artists, activists, and the general public. We especially encourage submissions that address Emerson’s relevance in our 21st-century moment; consider him in conversation with philosophers, poets, environmentalists, artists, and activists, within and beyond the nineteenth century; and explore him in transnational and interdisciplinary contexts.

Submissions may take any form—meditations, provocations, polemics, analyses, critical-creative hybrids, personal reflections—but should be original work, jargon-free, and accessible to the general public. Submissions will be received on a rolling basis and reviewed by members of the Ralph Waldo Emerson Society Media Committee. Submissions may be returned to applicants with suggested revisions. Please submit your Transparent Eyeball contributions to


Legacies of Resistance: Emerson, Buddhism, and Richard Wright’s Pragmatist Poetics
Anita Patterson

In these dark and uncertain times, it is inspiring to learn how Emerson’s legacy has fostered a life-affirming intercultural dialogue in works by African American writers.  Consider, for example, his engagement with Buddhism. . . [READ MORE]

“Brahma” Contains Multitudes: Hinduism’s Influence on Emerson
Gary Ricketts

Ralph Waldo Emerson inherited his father’s affinity for Hinduism and lived long enough to convey its importance to Western spirituality during the first generation of American scholars to have some access to Hindu scriptures. . . [READ MORE] 

An Essay about & an Excerpt from Living from the Soul
Sam Torode

I believe that Emerson’s voice is needed now as much as ever, in this time of national crisis.  Throughout his career, he spoke out against racial injustice and in support of American ideals. One of his continual themes is that we’re all connected. . . [READ MORE]