Walt Whitman was a man that served as a nurse helping wounded soldiers in the Civil War. While he was there, he took what he saw and wrote them in his poems. Every aspect of each poem related to the time that he was in and he wrote about every experience and feeling he had about what he saw. Whitman had three themes that he used to focus all of his poems on and these themes were individuality, democracy, and freedom. With writing with these themes, Whitman could make an impact on what the reader imagined in their head while reading and he was also able to convey a certain feeling through his poems that he wanted the reader to feel. Whitman had a unique style of writing, which was free verse. Through free verse, Whitman could direct and write a poem in a way that he liked and in a way where he was able to give more detail rather than writing in a rhythmic way. Through Walt Whitman’s themes of individuality, democracy, and freedom, Whitman was able to express his feelings about war and leaders in the poems that he wrote during the Civil War time.
Whitman’s work has an arguable style that makes his work appear as an egotistical piece of literature for some and others may find a different deeper meaning within his work. This work is an excellent example of patriotic work that attempts better its audience throughout by making revelations and comparisons of different idea and thoughts about the nation's people. Whitman illustrates his interpretation of what a kind of person is a great person is and how they go about life. He intends to make his audience better as a whole and understand the underlying problem that some have. Whitman's writing truly expresses his feelings about his time and what he expects from them for a better
Walt Whitman had many ideas of how America was not living up to what the founding fathers had hoped to have achieved in their democracy a century before in succeeding from England. Whitman thought that the government was beginning to resemble what the founding fathers had fought and multitudes of soldiers died to escape from. In contrast to what the government had been returning to, Americans as a whole were finding their identity as a very young nation and were proud to call themselves Americans. Whitman was progressive when it came to his ideas on women and industry and it showed in the book Democratic Vistas.
“Song of Myself” is an attempt by Walt Whitman to become the “American poet” as described by Ralph Waldo Emerson; he attempts to be “[T]he sayer, the namer, and [representative] of beauty” (Emerson 1182). Whitman wants to speak to and for America. Whitman does not explicitly choose sides on the slavery debate that was raging at the time of his writing, but he does express the equality of all people, regardless of gender and race in “Song of Myself”. While Whitman’s writing can be read as neutral but “Song of Myself” is, in reality, very anti-slavery and pro-equality.
Walt Whitman's life is the story of a young man's journey to become the great americian poet that he set out to be. It was a life of struggle and adversity. While we all know too well how it feels to be judged for what or how we believe, Whitman didn't let it scare him off easily. He had strong beliefs and stood his ground for what he believed in, no matter what names he was called or what people said about him. In his writtings and his life Whitman was true to who he was and what he believed.
(A critique of Walt Whitman’s themes and ideas in Song of Myself 6, 46, 47)
...ul, talented writer. Whitman himself said, “What I really had to give out was something more serious, more off from politics and towards general life.”
Walt Whitman’s hard childhood influenced his work greatly, he was an uneducated man but he managed to become one of the most known poets. Whitman changed poetry through his work and is now often called the father of free verse. Especially through Leaves of Grass he expressed his feelings and sexuality to world and was proud of it. He had a different view at life, his hard childhood, and his sexuality that almost no one understood made him introduce a new universal theme to the world. Almost all critics agree that Walt Whitman was one of the most influential and innovative poet. Karl Shapiro says it best, “The movement of his verses is the sweeping movement of great currents of living people with general government and state”.
This paper deals with Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself" in relation to Julia Kristeva's theories of abjection--my paper does not point to abjection in the text, but rather the significance of the abscence of abjection. This abscence, looming and revolting, arises from Whitman's attemt to refigure a conception of sublimity which delimits the material which can trigger the sublime moment. Whitman's democracy of the sublime is inclusive of those figures on the American landscape, their lives and voices, which are functionalized into his world. This paper employs the theories of George Lukacs and Julia Kristeva allow the unearthing of the archeological layers of Whitman's text.
The great life of Walt Whitman is still talked about today. He went from being a student, to a journalist, then an editor. He was very successful and thoughtful, and made many accomplishments during his 73 years of life.
Thus, the ending of “I sing the body electric” is the most significant part of the whole poem. It ties in Walt Whitman’s belief in the well-being of others and how we must not ignore what our body is telling us, since it makes up the soul. That’s why toward the end of his poem, he concluded by saying “O I say these are not the parts and poems of the body only but of the soul” because without the soul, we wouldn’t have an
Walter Whitman was born May 31st, 1819 in West Hills, Long Island. At the age of eleven his formal schooling was concluded and took up employment at a law firm. After the law firm Whitman began to work in journalism. By the age of fifteen Whitman was riding a daily fairy from Brooklyn to Manhattan where he interacted with the general population whom he felt “most at home” with. In 1835 Whitman was forced home, after five years as a traveling school teacher he had founded his own newspaper. After years of working in journalism and moving back in with his family to support them financially, in 1854 Whitman released his first edition of Leaves of Grass containing twelve poems. After, in Whitman's own words, “3...
In 1855, Walt Whitman, an influential American poet published his first edition of his collection of poetry, Leaves of Grass, in which a controversial piece was included, “I Sing the Body Electric.” Whitman wrote the poem during the 19th century and pre civil war, within a free verse genre. Harold Bloom, an American critique and professor at Yale University, mentions in his book, Bloom’s How to Write about Walt Whitman, that equality is one of the central standards of the American society and that throughout most of Whitman’s life, “America struggled to fulfill the promise of equality for all” (Bloom 107). That said, the stereotypical male and female of the 1800s were given defined roles in society: “Man with the head, woman with the heart” (Larke). Woman stayed home and performed tasks that defined their role as a wife and mother. On the other hand, the man’s role was to get involved in outside activities. Today, changes in ideas and aspirations differentiate less the roles of men and women. Women still have main responsibilities for the home and children; however, as opposed to the 19th century, there is a greater measure of equality. Whitman sees democracy as a way of integrating individuals’ ideas into the everyday life, such that all are considered equal. The poem is divided into nine sections in which Whitman challenges the conventional gender roles during the 19th century. In “I Sing the Body Electric,” Whitman argues that all bodies are of equal importance regardless of race, gender or social differences, as he expresses his concern towards the limitations of gender roles based on the norms of society during the 19th century. Through the use of parallel structure, Whitman provides a catalogue of the body by enumeration an...
Walt Whitman is one of America’s most popular and most influential poets. The first edition of Whitman’s well-known Leaves of Grass first appeared in July of the poet’s thirty-sixth year. A subsequent edition of Leaves of Grass (of which there were many) incorporated a collection of Whitman’s poems that had been offered readers in 1865. The sequence added for the 1867 edition was Drum-Taps, which poetically recounts the author’s experiences of the American Civil War.