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Dickinson’s Poetry

Emily Dickinson

Context

Table of Contents

Analysis

Emily Dickinson led one of the most prosaic lives of any great poet. At a time when fellow poet Walt Whitman was ministering to the Civil War wounded and traveling across America—a time when America itself was reeling in the chaos of war, the tragedy of the Lincoln assassination, and the turmoil of Reconstruction—Dickinson lived a relatively untroubled life in her father’s house in Amherst, Massachusetts, where she was born in 1830 and where she died in 1886. Although popular myth often depicts Dickinson as the solitary genius, she, in fact, remained relatively active in Amherst social circles and often entertained visitors throughout her life. However, she was certainly more isolated than a poet such as Whitman: Her world was bounded by her home and its surrounding countryside; the great events of her day play little role in her poetry. Whitman eulogized Lincoln and wrote about the war; Dickinson, one of the great poets of inwardness ever to write in English, was no social poet—one could read through her Collected Poems1,776 in all—and emerge with almost no sense of the time in which she lived. Of course, social and historical ideas and values contributed in shaping her character, but Emily Dickinson’s ultimate context is herself, the milieu of her mind.

Dickinson is simply unlike any other poet; her compact, forceful language, characterized formally by long disruptive dashes, heavy iambic meters, and angular, imprecise rhymes, is one of the singular literary achievements of the nineteenth century. Her aphoristic style, whereby substantial meanings are compressed into very few words, can be daunting, but many of her best and most famous poems are comprehensible even on the first reading. During her lifetime, Dickinson published hardly any of her massive poetic output (fewer than ten of her nearly 1,800 poems) and was utterly unknown as a writer. After Dickinson’s death, her sister discovered her notebooks and published the contents, thus, presenting America with a tremendous poetic legacy that appeared fully formed and without any warning. As a result, Dickinson has tended to occupy a rather uneasy place in the canon of American poetry; writers and critics have not always known what to make of her. Today, her place as one of the two finest American poets of the nineteenth century is secure: Along with Whitman, she literally defines the very era that had so little palpable impact on her poetry.

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The Brain is than the Sky' Dickinson crossword

by crosswords1, September 28, 2013

This time, we got the following crossword puzzle clue : The Brain is than the Sky' Dickinson that also known as The Brain is than the Sky' Dickinson 5 letters . First, we gonna look for more hints to the The Brain is than the Sky' Dickinson crossword puzzle . Then we will collect all the require information and for solving The Brain is than the Sky' Dickinson crossword . In the final, we get all the possible answers for the this crossword puzzle definition.
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Hope poem analysis

by Nerradnahc, February 21, 2014

What is hope? Hope is what gives someone the feeling that they still can succeed even when everything is against them. It gives someone the will to go on even when there is only a small chance. In the poem “Hope” the poet Emily Dickinson describes hope as an never ending greatness that “perches in the soul”, it’s inside you and keeps you warm. Hope can not be put down easily and never ask for anything even in tough times. In this poem, Emily Dickinson describes hope as a lively, confident bird that go against chillest land and stra... Read more

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Biblical Allusion

by 14elusky, April 13, 2014

I think it's possible that this poem has a biblical allusion when it refers to the bird. Dickinson was raised in the transcendentalist era, and there was a lot of criticism oriented around the bible. The allusion could be that Jesus was said to give bread to people of poverty. He then told them not to eat the bread without giving the crumbs to the bird. I think this relates to the poem because man and nature was seen as one, while now they are considered to be vastly divided.

I'm not religious so I have no idea if this is correct or ... Read more

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4 out of 5 people found this helpful

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