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Article published on 26 December 2006
last modification on 25 December 2006

by r-c.
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The history of the United States includes several moments of creative thought, when some of its brightest minds happened to meet and work together. One of the best known instances of such an event was the creation of the transcendantalist philosophy. However, this adventure was limited to New Englanders and may perhaps be considered today as somewhat parochial. The best examples of international intellectual ferment are probably to be found in Robert Owen’s New Harmony Movement, which started in 1816 and was soon followed by the Fourierist communities, – brilliant experiences though less international in scope,– and the adventure which started in the Ferrer Center.

If a handful of American cities can boast of their cosmopolitan creativity, certainly the New York Modern School can be considered as a highlight of intellectual life. Harry Kelly, one of its founders, described it as "the most dynamic group of men and women of its kind ever brought together in this country". Historian Paul Avrich called it the "Academy Humane". The Modern School Movement remains to this day one of the best example of anarchist creativeness in the United States.


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