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The American ClassicsA Personal Essay$
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Denis Donoghue

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780300107814

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300107814.001.0001

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Leaves of Grass

Leaves of Grass

(p.177) 5 Leaves of Grass
The American Classics

Denis Donoghue

Yale University Press

This chapter offers a reading of Walt Whitman's novel Leaves of Grass. It highlights the difficulty of interpreting this novel without first taking a position on several other issues that demand one's attention for extraneous reasons and in coming to terms with Whitman not merely as the author of certain poems, but as a phenomenon of American culture. It also discusses arguments about Whitman's sensitivity and the view that he ignored the fatal antiquity of human nature in this novel.

Keywords:   Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman, American culture, sensitivity, human nature

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