Walt Whitman Biography

Topics: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, New Jersey Pages: 2 (704 words) Published: November 29, 2013
Hannah Mossor
Walter Whitman Biography
Barlow

Water Whitman, was born on May 31st, 1819 in Long Island, New York. He was an essayist, poet, ad journalist, as well as a volunteer nurse in the course of the American Civil War (1861-65). Walt Whitman participated in the shift in the transcendentalism towards realism, and both views are present toward his works. Walt Whitman is referred to as “the father of the free verse.” He was one of the most influential American poets.

Inside as well as outside of his poetry, Walt Whitman exposed his views on the abolition of slavery, an egalitarian view on races; even if later in his life he saw abolition as a potential threat to democracy. Apart from his poetry, Walt Whitman’s sexuality is also often a subject of discussion. The discussions revolve around his alleged homosexuality and further on about whether he ever had sexual relations with men.

Walt Whitman was the second of nine children and received his nickname “Walt”, as a way of distinguishing him from his father, also named Walter. Walt Whitman’s childhood was usually described by himself as unhappy, mainly due to the economic struggles of his family. After concluding his formal schooling at the age of 11, Walt Whitman searched for jobs, first as an office boy and later as an apprentice for a newspaper, so as to help with the family income. He later taught in Long Island’s school, a job he thought to be unsatisfying, and founded the newspaper Long-Islander. In the end of the 30s, Whitman left for New York where he published many poems, short stories, and a novel, Franklin Evans, or the Inebriate, all works considered unremarkable. In the following years, Whitman worked for a variety of newspapers as editor and contributor. Also in this period Whitman made use of a constructed persona for writing a series of essays called Sun-Down Papers—From the Desk of a Schoolmaster, a skill that he employed many times throughout his career. In 1940 he was accused of...
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