Walt Whitman's America

Walt Whitman's America

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In his poetry Walt Whitman set out to encompass all of America and in so doing heal its deepening divisions. This magisterial biography demonstrates the epic scale of his achievement, as well as the dreams and anxieties that impelled it, for it places the poet securely within the political and cultural context of his age. Combing through the full range of Whitman's writing, David Reynolds shows how Whitman gathered inspiration from every stratum of nineteenth-century American life: the convulsions of slavery and depression; the raffish dandyism of the Bowery qb'hoysq; the exuberant rhetoric of actors, orators, and divines. We see how Whitman reconciled his own sexuality with contemporary social mores and how his energetic courtship of the public presaged the vogues of advertising and celebrity. Brilliantly researched, captivatingly told, Walt Whitman's America is a triumphant work of scholarship that breathes new life into the biographical genre. From the Trade Paperback edition.A real fear of annihilation lurks behind the poem a€œTime to Come, a€ in which he notes that a€œThis brain, and heart, and wondrous form ... for this kind of death- obsessed poetry, including eighteenth-century graveyard verse and dark Romanticism.


Title:Walt Whitman's America
Author: David S. Reynolds
Publisher:Vintage - 2011-05-04
ISBN-13:

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