Social Restrictions Of The Time In Poetry Of Walt Whitman And Emily Dickinson

Whitman & Dickinson are Re-Defining Poetry

Walt Whitman is often forgotten when we talk about literary trailblazers. Whitman, Dickinson and others are often identified by their ability fuse form with content. They made poetry that had a tremendous impact on Americans as well as the general public. They explored the social limitations of their time by ignoring poetry’s formalities and the social boundaries regarding self-identity and sexuality.

Early Americans had a hard time identifying themselves, especially as the country was expanding at an unintended pace. Artists, writers, politicians all reflected this sense of individualism. Particularly, the idea that oneself was important was blurred when America’s first society was created. Since then, Americans have been fighting for freedom. Through their writing, they were able to speak out on the topic of self-identity.

The issue of sexuality in American culture’s younger years was not well-known. People had an intimate view of both the sexuality around them and others. Emily Dickinson’s poem, “Wild night -Wild night!” depicts a curious, adventurous young person navigating their sexuality journey in an enthusiastic repetition.

The poem’s speaker’s optimistic and enthusiastic approach to life shows the author’s disregard of the norm. Dickinson uses sailing vocabulary words such as “port”, “compass”, “chart,” “rowing,” and “moor” to make sexuality easier for her readers. A negative and unproductive approach is to depict sexuality as something that must be overcome to make progress in life. Dickinson uses exclamation marks to make sexuality seem more fun than a difficult task.

The positive connotation of the word “Wild”, as it is used here, is that it is presented as an exclamatory declaration, rather than merely as a warning. This poem is a refreshing glimpse into Emily Dickinson’s playful side, which most people never see. “Wild evenings – wild nights!” encourages readers to be themselves, and not to rely on any other devices. Dickinson disobeyed the social rules of her era to promote self-exploration.

Walt Whitman had a subtle influence on America’s sexuality view. He sneakily finds himself between Whitman and Whitman in “Song of Myself,” where he writes: “I bequeath me to the dirt to grown from the grass that I love.” Whitman already has a strong influence on Whitman as a writer and human being.

Whitman is deeply connected to nature in a spiritual way. Whitman also demonstrates his love of nature in the 14th section. He says that “The press of mine foot to the Earth springs a hundred affections” as opposed to Dickinson who declared her beliefs through a speaker. Whitman directly addresses his questions about life, which is often a spiritual interrogation that can blind readers to Whitman’s inability to know the answers. He uses nature, humanity, spirituality, and religion to address the crucial questions.

“Does it seem that I have some complex purpose?” What are you? Whitman is not content to be defined or restricted by others’ choices. Whitman’s specific questions are essential for those who want to know themselves. Whitman’s song of my self empowers those who think in an age of conformity.

Dickinson’s spiritually insightful, metaphysically pleasant piece “I felt A Funeral” refuses to question the inevitability of Dickinson’s journey through different spheres. The poem’s true meaning lies in the particular diction Dickinson uses for her funeral ceremony. Death falls under the category of unchallenged, unchallenged, or untouched. Since the beginning of time, death has terrified human beings. Death is also recognized through funerals and burials. Each stanza represents an important step on the speaker’s way to their final resting place.

The first shows the setting for the funeral. The second depicts her entrance into the arena of mourners. The third portrays her death and the burial. The fifth and fourth depict her non-existent mental state. Because a body can die, so too does the soul.

Whitman’s Song of Myself defied all notions of what poetry should look like. Free verse is a form that Whitman would have considered somewhat outlandish. Whitman explored the boundaries between acceptable and unacceptable through free verse.

The use of rhyme in “Song of Myself” is sparse, if any. Whitman chose to ignore the tradition of rhyme in poetry and instead creates his true, raw poetry. Emily Dickinson also is known to be a prolific grammatical lawbreaker. How she uses punctuation and capitalization can have a significant impact on the final outcome of the poem. She plays with seemingly insignificant things and unleashes her nonsensical grammar syntax. Dickinson sets fire to the previous formula of poetry and builds her own poetic voice from the ashes and rubble.

These literary revolutionaries were instrumental in the rise of new poetry. Romantic poets fell into a particular mold. They glorified the subject matter of their poems, while Whitman or Dickinson were realists. And their poetry definitely reflects their philosophical beliefs. Both of these authors were unique and creative, and the literary world has benefited from their distinct voices. Both authors are easily understood by readers because of their seamless blend of content and form. Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson together brought poetry to America. This was the dawning of a new era that would ultimately help Americans find their self-identity.