Study Questions for Emerson's "Self-Reliance"

How does (and should) a person define his/her place in society? (what does Emerson mean by "society" anyhow?)

What are the implications of self-reliance for business? for religion (prayers, creeds)? for traveling? for art? for property ownership and government?

Do you think Emerson's ideas of self-reliance are selfish?  Why or why not?

What are some of the assumptions behind Emerson's ideas?

How do Emerson's ideas relate to the myth of the American dream?

How does the philosophy of individualism support a capitalist economic system?

Do Emerson's ideas provide a guide to living a moral life in a democracy? In a capitalist society?

Does Emerson believe in free will? 

Are there any dangers inherent in Transcendentalism?

Is there any room in Emerson's philosophy for the problem of evil?