Article

Transcendental Poetics:Emerson, Higginson, and the Rise of Whitman and Dickinson

Ed Folsom

in The Oxford Handbook of Transcendentalism

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780195331035
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195331035.013.0019

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Transcendental Poetics:Emerson, Higginson, and the Rise of Whitman and Dickinson

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This article, mainly, analyses the poetic works of the Transcendentalists. Most of them have been categorized as essayists or nonfiction writers. Poetry was to them the occasional rather than the chief medium of expression. It was said that Transcendentalist poetry was too philosophical, not written to please, but to convince. However, this poetry often seemed as a kind of bardic or homiletic wisdom literature. The article also examines the works of Whitman and Dickinson relating them to Transcendentalism as although it is generally known that Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson are somehow associated with Transcendentalism, no one seems quite sure just how or just how much their poetry can or should be called “Transcendental.” While the Transcendentalists attempted to keep Whitman's and Dickinson's poetry in check, they also promoted their poetry to encourage society to take their idiosyncratic poetry seriously.

Keywords: Transcendental; poetry; Walt Whitman; Leaves of Grass; Emily Dickinson

Article.  14660 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (19th Century) ; Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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