Archive for November, 2009

Leaves of Grass would not have been possible without the Civil Rights Movement.

Walt Whitman said that, “Leaves of Grass would not have been possible without the Civil War.”  With this statement, I believe that he was asserting that the changes in the attitudes and perspectives of his readers after the war were vital to their overall understanding of the book.  While I agree with this, I think that it goes even further than that.  For the modern reader there are other events since the Civil War that have “made Leaves of Grass possible.”  I will approach these events and discuss how they have shaped the modern interpretation of Whitman’s classic work and allowed it to maintain its relevance throughout the years.