Connect One Aspect of Whitman’s Biography to Your Understanding of American Romanticism

View these short PBS videos on Uncle Walt’s life and write 3-5 sentences in which you connect one specific detail about his biography (life history) to one characteristic of Romanticism.  Click on the comment thread and paste your prose (Remember to use Standard English) from your word document onto the blog.

Check out this website that has his notebooks online:

About Bill Sullivan

I am an English teacher working with great students at Suffield Academy. I also teach seniors in various project-based learning environments. Some of the #PBL topics included global issues, such as Pandemics, Climate Change, and Water; more recently I have asked students to research and identify topics important to our school community and their generation. We curate these topics with a #StudentCenteredPBL. For the past eleven years, I also created a driving question for a class to research a local history mystery and present their findings in a community program partnering with our local historical society. These topics encompass researching the lives of enslaved individuals who were contributors to the foundation of our community.
This entry was posted in American Literary Studies, English III, Homework, Poetry and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Connect One Aspect of Whitman’s Biography to Your Understanding of American Romanticism

  1. Mark Shelanskas says:

    I feel that Walt Whitman has great romanticism towards himself. he shows this by focusing on how he can improve himself. He grows through the writing process of his poetry. Theses struggles make him stronger as an individual.

  2. LilyZ says:

    Whitman moved to different places to chase his dreams through out his lifetime. For example, he moved to New York to start his own life without his father, then to New Orleans for his job etc. A deep-rooted idealism is one of the characteristics of romanticism that connected to his life.

  3. coleenflynn says:

    Whitman shows the romantic trait of individualism in through his view on poetry. Whitman believed that writing could change the views of society. His strong beliefs in his own opinions lead him to be a very influential and individual man. He also was able to separate himself from society by changing the structures of his poems, and push the boundaries of traditional poem structure.

  4. Jun Park says:

    Walt Whitman has a romantic trade of individualism with his life. He gets rid of his father’s dark background and creates his own pathway in poetry. Moreover, his poem broke out of the form of formal poetry with no boundary. In the book Leaves of Grass, he even says, “Every soul has its individual voice.” He expected people to be healed by his poems and became a unique poet by his individualism.

  5. izzaraugarte says:

    Walt Whitman presents the romantic element of Nationalism when he believed that he could prevent the civil war from happening just by writing a book. He was determined to bind his country together and he expected them to be healed by his poems.

  6. Sarah Boardman says:

    “every soul has its own individual voice” This quote is from a biography about Whitman. It emphasizes the individualism that he not only showed in his poetry, but expressed in his everyday life. Individualism promotes that everybody is different and that you must find your own person and not rely on other to show you who you are. This quote taken from the video biography I watched expresses the romantic element of individualism that Whitman used in his poetry and portrayed throughout his life.

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