American literature | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by Vivian R. Pollak

This literature criticism consists of approximately 19 pages of analysis & critique of American literature.
This section contains 5,487 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Vivian R. Pollak

SOURCE: “Death as Repression, Repression as Death: A Reading of Whitman's ‘Calamus Poems’” in Walt Whitman of Mickle Street, edited by Geoffrey M. Sill, The University of Tennessee Press, 1994, pp. 179-93.

In the following excerpt, Pollak suggests that in his “Calamus Poems” “Whitman uses death tropes both to deny the fulfillment of his eroticism and to affirm its vitality in the face of social and psychological oppression.”

In a desperate and comical moment several years before his death in 1892, Whitman wrote to his English admirer John Addington Symonds that he had fathered six children; referred to a grandson, a “fine boy, who writes to me occasionally”; and generally sought to rebuff Symonds's persistent inquiries. Symonds had written:

In...

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This section contains 5,487 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Vivian R. Pollak