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A New American Poet

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Title: A New American Poet


1
A New American Poet
  • Walt Whitman 1819 1892

2
WALT WHITMAN
3
Leaves of Grass
  • A spiritual autobiography
  • Expanded and revised 9 times throughout Whitmans
    life
  • It tells the story of an enchanted observer who
    says who he is at every opportunity and claims
    what he loves by naming it.
  • this is no book/Who touches this touches a man
    (Evler 349).

4
Leaves of Grass
  • Too boldly new and strange to win the attention
    of reviews or readers who had fixed ideas about
    poetry
  • Wrote Emerson of it, I find it the most
    extraordinary piece of wit and wisdom(Evler
    349).

5
Poetic Devices of Whitman
  • Alliteration
  • Assonance
  • Imagery
  • Onomatopoeia
  • Catalog
  • Personification
  • Metaphor
  • Consonance
  • Parallel structure
  • Repetition
  • Anaphora (repetition of words or phrases at the
    beginning of consecutive lines or sentences)
  • Cadence
  • Informal or slang invented words
  • Tone

6
Alliteration
  • The repetition of the same or similar consonant
    sounds in words that are close together.
  • It is used to create musical effects and to
    establish mood.
  • From Song of Myself 1
  • I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
  • And what I assume you shall assume,
  • For every atom belonging to me as good
    belongs to you.

7
Assonance
  • From Song of Myself 1
  • I loaf and invite my soul,
  • I lean and loaf at my ease observing a spear
    of summer grass.
  • The repetition of similar vowel sounds followed
    by different consonant sounds especially in
    words that are close together.

8
Alliteration and Consonance
  • Alliteration The repetition of the
  • same or similar consonant
  • sounds at the beginning of words
  • That are close together.
  • Consonance The repetition of
  • like consonant sounds in the
  • middle and end of words.
  • Assonance The repetition of
  • similar vowel sounds.
  • Alliteration, Consonance, and
  • Assonance are used to create
  • musical effects and to establish
  • Mood and tone.

From Song of Myself 1 by Walt Whitman I
celebrate myself, and sing myself, And what I
assume you shall assume, For every atom
belonging to me as good belongs to you. I loaf
and invite my soul, I lean and loaf at my
ease, observing a spear of summer grass
9
Imagery
  • The use of language to evoke a mental picture or
    a concrete sensation of a person, place, thing,
    or idea.
  • Alone far in the wilds and mountains I
    hunt, Wandering amazed at my own lightness and
    glee, In the late afternoon choosing a safe spot
    to pass the night, Kindling a fire and broiling
    the fresh-killed game, Falling asleep on the
    gathered leaves with my dog and gun by my side.
  • Leaves of Grass 10

10
Simile and Metaphor
Dreams
by Langston Hughes Hold fast to dreams For if
dreams die Life is a broken-winged bird That
cannot fly. Hold fast to dreams For when dreams
go Life is a barren field Frozen with snow.
  • Simile Making a comparison between two unlike
    things using like, as, or than.
  • Metaphor Making the same comparison without the
    comparative language.

11
Personification
  • Giving human
  • qualities to
  • animals or
  • nonliving things
  • Example Time stood still.
  • The car hugged the road.

12
Onomatopoeia
  • The use of words whose sound imitates or suggests
    its meaning like buzz, bang, pow, zoom, clomp,
    etc.
  • This form of imagery appeals to the sense of
    hearing.
  • The runaway slave
  • came to my house and
  • stoppd outside,/ I heard
  • his motions crackling the
  • twigs of the woodpile

13
Catalog
  • A list of people, things, or events
  • Whitman uses long, descriptive lists to express
    the voice of America.
  • I hear America singing, the varied carols I
    hear,/ Those of mechanicsThe carpenter
    singingThe mason singingThe boatman singingThe
    wood-cutters song

14
Its All in the Way Its Written
  • Parallel Structure The repetition of words or
    phrases that have similar grammatical structure
  • From Song of Myself 33
  • I am the hounded slave, I wince at the bite of
    the dogs,
  • I clutch the rails of the fence, my gore
    dribs..

15
Make It Sound Like Music
  • Cadence The natural, rhythmic rise and fall of
    language as it is normally spoken. It is not
    written to a particular, predictable meter of
    language.
  • Free Verse Poetry that does not conform to a
    regular meter or rhyme scheme.
  • Walt Whitman was the first American poet to use
    free verse.

16
A Style All His Own
  • Tone A writers attitude toward a given
    subject. Tone is determined through a study of
    words and descriptions used by the author.
  • Tone is dependent upon diction and style.
  • The spotted hawk swoops by and accuses me, he
    complains of my gab and loitering./
  • I too am not a bit tamed, I too am
    untranslatable,/ I sound my barbaric yawp over
    the roofs of the world (Song of Myself 52).

17
A Few More Things
  • Whitman used chunky language to enlarge the
    possibilities of American poetry.
  • He used slang words or invented words like Yawp
    to reflect the depth of heart he hoped to
    express.
  • In repetition he trumpeted America as a land of
    greatness, diversity, passion, and optimism. He
    wrote of a great America.

18
Leaves of Grass was evolved from 12 unnamed
poems in A small collection to more than 383 in
its final edition.
19
In Leaves of Grass
  • Whitman wrote this collection of poetry as an
    epic, a great journey of the poet who is the
    hero. He is a hero of the future and all of his
    actions reflect a spiritual and sometimes
    physical journey across the landscape of America.
  • Whitman cajoles, and thunders he chants,
    celebrates, chuckles, and caresses.

20
Walt Whitman
  • spills from his capacious American soul every
    dreg of unEnglishness, every sweet sound thumbing
    its nose at traditional subject matter and tone.
    Here is Samson pulling the house of literature
    down around his ears, yet singing in the ruins
    (Evler 350).

21
The proof of a poet is that his country
absorbs him as affectionately as he absorbed
it. Walt Whitman
22
I, too, sing America. I am the darker
brother. They send me to eat in the kitchen When
company comes, But I laugh, And eat well, And
grow strong. Tomorrow, I'll be at the table When
company comes. Nobody'll dare Say to me, "Eat in
the kitchen," Then. Besides, They'll see how
beautiful I am And be ashamed-- I, too, am
America. - Langston Hughes
23
I, Too, Sing America Reflection Write a half
page reflection about why you might have omitted
a group/groups from your poem. Discuss their
contribution, positive or negative, to your
school. OR Write a half page reflection on why
you think Whitman might have left out a
particular group in his poem.
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