Article

Promotion Literature

Karen Schramm

in The Oxford Handbook of Early American Literature

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780195187274
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195187274.013.0004

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

 Promotion Literature

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Imagine a land possessing “for certain the best ground and sweetest climate,” where strawberries grow “in abundance, very large ones, some being two inches about,” and birds course by in flocks “seeing neither beginning nor ending, length or breadth of these millions of millions.” It is an alluring locale. This article focuses on the genre of promotion literature with New England being the main focus. Coined by Howard Mumford, the terms refer to a particular genre in which a foreign land is constantly referred to. There are eight types of promotion literature, beginning with formal treatise on colonization to the personal report by an interested observer. Scores of promotional tracts poured forth in the seventeenth century, aimed at an eager and appreciative audience. Some examples include Captain John Smith's Description of New England (1616), the anonymous Mourt's Relation (1622), Edward Winslow's Good Newes from New England (1624), William Wood's New England's Prospect (1634) and so on.

Keywords: promotion literature; treatise; colonization; promotional tracts; John Smith

Article.  9155 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800) ; Literary Studies (Fiction, Novelists, and Prose Writers)

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