Manifestations of Individualism in the Works of Emily Dickenson

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Updated: Nov 20, 2022
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Emily Dickenson reflects Romantic thinking in her writings in many ways. For example, you can see this by how she cherishes individualism, accentuates emotion, and shows how she values nature; all of which are characteristics of Romanticism. Instead, as mentioned, she does not look at other people to find beauty, but to nature. You can see this in “I Started Early – Took My Dog” where she describes her feelings through a message about the sea.

Throughout the poem, you can also see how she feels that nature as a “spiritual” guidance. You can also see example of Dickenson view of emotions in her poems. In “I Like To See It Lap The Miles” as she uses words like “horrid”, mphasizing emotions of terror. Finally, you can see how she cherishes individualism in her poem “The Soul Selects Her Own Body”. In the writing, she states that the “souls selects her own body – then – shuts the door”; this, she is implying that people choose who they are and refuse to be told otherwise. There are many characteristics in Whitman’s writing style. One characteristic is that he uses repetition in lines.

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This can be seen in many of his poems. For example, in poem number two, in the first line, Whitman uses the word “reckon’d” twice. He also repeats the works “possess”, “shall”, and “nor” throughout the poem. This can also be seen in poem number six when he repeats the words “mothers” and “perceive”. This characteristic emphasizes the point he is trying to get across. By Whitman continuously using this word, he accentuates the idea that the person he’s writing about is causing destruction. This can also be seen in the first poem when he continuously uses the words “me”, “my”, and “myself”. By him repeating these words, it stresses how the poem represents him.

You can see characteristics in many writings by Walt Whitman. For example: in poem 46, Whitman shows multiple aspects of Romantic thinking. One illustration of this is how the poem shows the importance of independence of the individual. This can be seen when he states “Not I, not any one else can travel that road for you,You must travel it for yourself.”. In this sentence he implies that society can not choose who you are. You can also see Romanticism when he talks about the power of nature. At the end of the poem he states how his son will jump into a sea and come be able to come back. This statement goes along with the idea in Romanticism that nature represents a faultless world and holds power.

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Manifestations of individualism in the works of Emily Dickenson. (2022, Nov 20). Retrieved from