Lesson 1 (from Sections 1-4)
“Song of Myself” is an epic poem by American poet Walt Whitman. First published in 1855 as part of the collection Leaves of Grass, it is considered Whitman’s most famous and visionary poem. The poem is at once a meditation on what it is to be human, a song to the America that Whitman loved, and a sermon about the equality of man. Students in this lesson will research Walt Whitman and the humanist, transcendentalist, and realist movements in literary history, and will read and discuss Section 1 of the poem.
Research Activity: Take time in class to conduct research on the American poet Walt Whitman. What works did Whitman publish and when? Where did Whitman grow up? Where did he live as an adult? Where did he study? Also examine Whitman’s role as a writer of the transcendentalist, humanist, and realist movements. When did...
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