Walter Whitman 's Leaves Of Grass Essay

Walter Whitman 's Leaves Of Grass Essay

Length: 1346 words (3.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Nationality in Walter Whitman’s Leaves of Grass
The glamorization of American opportunity created a great sense of nationalism which encouraged many to embrace ideas like manifest destiny. Walt Whitman was a poet living in the nineteenth century who wrote many poems which figuratively painted a picture portraying enrichment and opportunity in America, and the greater opportunity which could be achieved through traveling west. One compilation of poems entitled Leaves of Grass, was quite influential to those living in America and abroad, catching the eye of many opportunists seeking a better future for themselves. While the stories may be different, a common theme of American nationality exists within the poetry of Walter Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.
Walt Whitman’s, “Pioneers! O Pioneers!” tells of the people traveling westward in America. The poem suggests that regardless of any danger the ambitious and young should move westward for the sake of enriching American lives with all the opportunity the west has to offer. The past life one lived in a European country can now be learned from or forgotten about as America now offers a much more enriching and free existence. Now pioneers could move on, no longer bound by social class and create their own future. With weapons in hand the pioneers would need to press on for the sake of all who had given their lives in the past, and all for the sake of ensuring their future. All who move west share a sense of unity regardless of status or sex. All pioneers regardless of being northern or southern statesmen, all share the common goal of moving westward for the sake of living enriched lives, and that is indeed worth fighting and dying for.
Whitman’s “Pioneers! O Pioneers!” is a twenty-six stan...

... middle of paper ... is fairly melancholic, but does do a fine job to show to what extent of nationality the soldier has, and what he’d do for that to live on in future generations.
Overall it would seem that Whitman’s poems greatly reflected the attitudes of his time. If they did not then Whitman’s poetry would not have been quite as influential as it has been. America for Whitman seemed to be united by the individual’s common sense of nationalism. Walt Whitman seemed to be very optimistic for the future of America it seems, even though he acknowledged the hardships of his time. It’s no wonder why Walt Whitman is considered to be such an important poet of his time. His depictions of nationalism, and clear belief in manifest destiny still remain relevant to this day. Arguably the American nationality, and drive for freedom, is still what sets Americans apart from other nations today.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Democratic Value of Whitman's Leaves of Grass Essay

- Early reviews of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass evince an incipient awareness of the unifying and acutely democratic aspects of the poetry. An article in the November 13th, 1856, issue of the New York Daily Times describes the modest, self-published book of twelve seemingly formless poems: "As we read it again and again, and we will confess that we have returned to it often, a singular order seems to arise out of its chaotic verses" (2). The Daily Times's identification of "order" out of "chaos" in Leaves of Grass parallels America's theoretical declaration of e pluribus unum, one out of many—a uniquely democratic objective....   [tags: Whitman Leaves of Grass Essays]

Better Essays
3350 words (9.6 pages)

Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman Essay

- Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman In the twentieth century, the name Walt Whitman has been synonymous with poetry. Whitman's most celebrated work, Leaves of Grass, was the only book he ever wrote, and he took a lifetime to write it. A large assortment of poems, it is one of the most widely criticized works in literature, and one of the most loved works as well. Whitman was unmarried and childless, and it has been noted that Leaves of Grass consumed him greatly; James E. Miller Jr. writes: "…he guided his poetic offspring through an uncertain, hesitant childhood, a lusty young manhood, and a serene old age…it is difficult to write the life of Whitman without writing instead of the...   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
1244 words (3.6 pages)

Walt Whitman's Life and Accomplishments Essay

- Born in Long Island, New York on May 31, 1819, Walt Whitman was the second of nine children born into a Democratic family (Benka). By eleven, Whitman ended his formal education and sought employment to financially support his family (Benka). He was able to acquire a job as an apprentice on the Long Island Patriot, where he was exposed to the printing trade and was able to discover his own style of writing (Benka). At age fourteen, Whitman was able to expand his knowledge of writing by working under the Patriot’s foreman editor William Hartshorne (Hall)....   [tags: civil war, leaves of grass, democratic family]

Better Essays
1128 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Walt Whitman And The New York

- May 31, 1819, Walt Whitman was born to Walter Whitman and Louisa Van Velsor. Walt was the second son of nine children who lived in New York in the 1820’s and 1830’s. Between 1825 and 1830 Walt attended public school in Brooklyn while his family moved often within the city. At twelve Walt began to learn the trade of printing to then begin loving the written word. Whitman worked as a printer until the age of seventeen when a fire destroyed where he worked. In 1836 he began working as a school teacher in Long Island until 1841 when he became a full-time journalist....   [tags: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, United States]

Better Essays
923 words (2.6 pages)

The Poetry Of Walt Whitman Essays

- American Poetry comes in many different shapes and forms. There are a plethora of American authors that use various writing techniques to transform their ideas into works of art. Walter “Walt” Whitman is one of the most famous authors that used a variety of styles in many of his poems. Many of his works of art affected the population and has influenced the country. He has created multiple poems that have become popular over the years and will be remembered for years to come. Walt Whitman comes from a self-deprecating family that has a tremendous adoration for their home country, America....   [tags: Poetry, Walt Whitman, Soul, Life, Allen Ginsberg]

Better Essays
1320 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on Walter Whitman

- Walter Whitman “I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey-work of the stars” (Whitman 41). Walter Whitman, also known as Walt Whitman, was born on May 31, 1819, in Long Island, New York, to Walter Whitman and Louisa Van Velsor Whitman. When he was twelve, Walt and his family settled in Brooklyn, up to then his family had lived in a dozen different places (Conarroe 4). Walt worked in many different positions; to some he was even viewed as a drifter. Walt was many different things; he worked as a carpenter and home builder, like his father, and apprentice printer, a school teacher, editor of several newspapers, including Brooklyn’s Daily Eagle, journalist, and writer....   [tags: Biography]

Better Essays
1016 words (2.9 pages)

An Essay About Walt Whitman

- Walter “Walt” Whitman, an American poet, essayist, journalist, and teacher, was born on May 31st of 1819 to parents Louisa and Walter Van Velsor Whitman as the second of nine children. About four years after his birth, Whitman and his family moved from his birth place-the town of Huntington on Long Island, New York-to the borough of Brooklyn in New York City, New York after a series of poor investment choices, among other things, left the family financially wounded; once there, Whitman attended school until the age of eleven, when he began to seek employment to help financially support his family....   [tags: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, New York City]

Better Essays
906 words (2.6 pages)

Walt Whitman Essay

- There are multiple different kinds of people in this world. Those kinds can include the nice people who try to help everyone out; these are the people who try to make everything equal. Then there are the people who try to survive, the people who are all for themselves and only care about progressing in their life. Walt Whitman is the type of person that if he cannot help others he will try his hardest to get it out to the people so that they can know what is really going on in the real world. Whitman was a man who loved writing, but he did not know that he would love writing from the start of his life....   [tags: Walt Whitman, United States, Song of Myself]

Better Essays
1700 words (4.9 pages)

Essay on Walter Whitman

- All Alone Walter Whitman was an American poet of the 1800’s. Walt was arguably one of America’s influential and innovative poets of his time. Whitman began work as a printer and journalist in the New York City area. He wrote articles on politics, civics, and the arts. During the Civil War, Whitman was a volunteer assistant in the military hospitals in Washington, D.C. After the war, he worked in several government departments until he suffered a stroke in 1873. He spent the rest of his life in Camden, N.J., where he continues to write poems and articles....   [tags: essays research papers]

Better Essays
2083 words (6 pages)

Walt Whitman's Drum-Taps Essay

- Walt Whitman's Drum-Taps - The Personal Record of Whitman’s Wartime Experiences 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....   [tags: Walt Whitman Drum-Taps Essays]

Free Essays
995 words (2.8 pages)