The History of American Poetry
What is American Poetry? The American poetry tradition has roots in the 17th-century efforts of the early colonists to add their own voice to the English tradition. Before the Thirteen Colonies were united under the Constitution, the poets of the New World continued their traditions and began writing their own poetry. Read on to learn more about the history of American poetry and the great poets who came before us. Here are some examples. Let's start with Walt Whitman.
In "Song of Myself," Walt Whitman challenges the limiting nature of a single human life by exploring its limits, both of gender and of race. Whitman wanted to dream the dream of every sleeping person and live everyone's life. In many ways, his work is an ode to America and its citizens. However, we are unable to understand Whitman's words without first understanding the meaning of "Song of Myself," which is an homage to the American spirit.
A patriotic American, Walt Whitman's parents named their three sons after their favorite American heroes. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Andrew Jackson are among his sons. Whitman moved to Brooklyn when he was three. His father hoped that his family would find economic success in New York City, but was unable to do so. Whitman's poetry changed the definition of "poetry," and his name is now synonymous with equality, sensuality, and individual value.
Many of the poems in Walt Whitman's American Poetry are reminiscent of the United States. Many of these poems are patriotic in nature, highlighting the strength of the American people. He also focuses on the power of voices and songs to create an enduring sense of identity. Whitman's poem "America" is especially relevant today, when America is so divided. While there are many similarities between the two works, they all share a common theme: the power of the American people and the strength of their voice.
In "American Poetry," Whitman complicates the idea of a unified self by rejecting the notion of a self as a "conjectural thing," borrowing a term from anthropologist James Clifford. Whitman rejects the notion of the self as something that a person can assemble, express, and subsequently confirm by others. He claims that his "self" is a composite of three identities and does not exist in one entity.
As a teenager, Whitman finished public school in Brooklyn and began working as an office boy, a clerk in a law office, and as an apprentice printer for a newspaper. His late teens saw Whitman work as a schoolteacher in a rural area of Long Island. He also founded a weekly newspaper and was its editor. It would later reappear. In the 1840s, Whitman became the editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Walt Whitman grew up in a working-class family. His parents were farmers, and his father took up carpentry. While his parents did not have much formal education, they struggled to make ends meet. The Whitman family still lived on a portion of the ancestral estate. However, when the family grew, his father decided to move the growing family to Brooklyn, an emerging city.
After relocating to Brooklyn in 1841, Whitman returned to New York City, where he worked for different newspapers. While writing for the newspapers, Whitman also published short stories in literary journals. In 1845, Whitman moved back to Brooklyn and became the editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. While his career as a journalist in Washington lasted only until 1892, his writing continued to be influential throughout the ages.
After a long and complex preface, Whitman introduced himself as an "American bard" and chose a photograph of himself as a common worker. The title was embossed on the green cover, a rare case of self-publishing. Though this was a novel practice at the time, the publication was not very successful. The book went unnoticed largely because Whitman wished to become a poet for the common man.
During her early adulthood, Emily Dickinson began writing prolifically. This was a change from the quiet and sheltered life she had lived prior to her education. Although she wrote infrequently during her youth, Dickinson began writing more frequently after the 1850s. She also wrote a great deal of correspondence and became active in the world of letters. Her works are characterized by a deep spirituality and a refusal to accept religious confinement.
As a poet, Dickinson avoided conventional conventions and utilized language that was unique to her generation. Unlike other poets, Dickinson rejected grammar rules and left out words that could clarify the meaning or emotion of the poem. Instead, she used dashes to indicate missing words or punctuation. Her use of language reflected her view of nature as dangerous and unforgiving. She often used metaphors, figurative language, and allusions to her own life and death.
Several books have appeared since Dickinson's death. One of the most accessible is The Life and Works of Emily Dickinson by Richard B. Sewall. A study of Dickinson's life is essential for any student of the poet's work. The Companion to Emily Dickinson includes essays by Alfred Leete Hampson, Martha Dickinson Bianchi, Mary Loeffelholz, and Mabel Loomis Todd. Those interested in Dickinson can also access her letters and holograph manuscripts.
The poetry of Emily Dickinson was received with mixed reception after her death. While her experimentation with form and style resulted in some criticism of her education, her work was later praised for its uniqueness and depth. The writer's life was a mystery that fuels our fascination with her work. Her poetic vision and evocative lyrics capture the essence of human life in a deeply personal and wistful way.
She also developed literary relationships. She cultivated literary relationships with Benjamin F. Newton, her father's law student. Through this friendship, Dickinson became acquainted with the poetry of William Wordsworth and Ralph Waldo Emerson. Her friends also introduced her to other poets, including Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Susan Gilbert. The latter two poems, "A Vision of Poets," and "Aurora Leigh," were influenced by Dickinson's reading.
Although Emily Dickinson was often considered a morbid poet, her work reflects her love of life and the human spirit. Her poems often contain Christian themes and a preoccupation with death. These themes are apparent in her death poems, but her poems are often based in Christian beliefs and are often filled with colorful descriptions of death. In the end, she sought to make her life as meaningful as possible for herself and for others.
Emily Dickinson was born in 1830 and spent her early adult life in Amherst, Massachusetts. She attended Amherst Academy for seven years and later attended the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary. Her brother Austin attended law school and married Susan Gilbert. Emily Dickinson also had a younger sister named Lavinia. Austin and Lavinia were her intellectual companions during her life. Their love of nature, music, and education gave her the inspiration for her poems.
"The Snake" by Emily Dickinson is a 24-line poem about a snake. The poem follows a common ABCB rhyme scheme, and it is not formalized into a specific meter. Dickinson aims to make the reader experience the poem and feel the same emotions as she does. For this reason, she avoided titles and ambiguous word choice in her poetry. When she wrote "The Snake," her intention was to give the reader an immediate experience of the experience.
While the words in her poems are small, they are packed with a rich world of meaning. Dickinson's work is deeply personal and intimate, and her poems reveal the eccentricity of her mind. Although she was generally unknown while she was alive, her works have remained part of the American literary canon and have become staples in the country's canon. And her life has been a fascinating one.