Death is an unknown, no one has ever died and come back to tell the tale, instead people have to imagine and come up with what they think it will be like. The poets, Emily Dickinson and William Cullen Bryant, both had very different perspectives when it came to writing about death. In Bryant’s “Thanatopsis”, the speaker emphasizes that one joins nature and should not be afraid because they will be with everyone else as equals when they die. This is different from Dickinson’s poem, “Because I could not stop for Death”, where the speaker takes a ride in a carriage with death for eternity. Whether or not these authors believed that their poems were actual representations of what happens when one dies, the poems both describe unique ideas of what
First off, the passive atmosphere with which the speaker tells the poem leaves the impression that she is unconcerned about death. The passive tone is caused by her lack of control over death and this is shown in the very first lines of the poem: ‘‘Because I could not stop for death – He kindly stopped for me – ’’ She could not stop for death because it was not up to her to decide when or how death would come to here. In addition, death here is personified as a polite suitor picking her up in a carriage. Emily Dickinson did not portray death as a cloaked demon ripping away the speaker’s life. Since death is portrayed as a nice guy who came to offer his service, the speaker does not fear it and rather accepts it.
American Romanticism emerged after America gained it’s independence from Britain. The movement began in Europe and quickly spread across the world. As American literature and art transitioned from Puritanism to Romanticism, God and religion were not the main ideas of these things anymore. Romantic pieces tended to focus on the beauty of nature, imagination, and emotion. Authors like Henry Longfellow would write uplifting romanticized pieces.
Throughout the poem, Dickinson describes Death as a male that keeps coming for her while she is trying to escape him. In the first two lines, she uses personification, giving Death human characteristics. “Because I could not stop for death, He kindly stopped for me,” emphasizing death as a male and how he has stopped for her at this point. In lines 9-12, Dickinson uses imagery to create a picture for the reader to emphasize what she and Death are witnessing as they are passing through the area. Imagery is used throughout the poem to illustrate what she is seeing such as children at recess and passing the Fields of Gazing Grain and watching the Sun Set as they take a walk.
Throughout the course of American literature, there have been many brilliant poets, one of them being Emily Dickinson, who wrote hundreds of poems during her lifetime. Most of her works dealt with her fascination with death; however, this came with a fair share of criticism. One of the interesting facts about her is that although she wrote hundreds of poems, they only began to be published after her death. Emily Dickinson, born on December 10, 1830, in Amherst, Massachusetts, was the middle child in a prominent family. The male members of her family helped to established and ran the town and its institutions.
The poem that stood out the most while reading this assortment of Emily Dickinson poems, was her poem numbered 656/520. This poem used imagery in numerous ways throughout in order to show the audience the important themes and the overall meaning of this work of literature. The poem’s main theme was about a walk on the beach that the poet encountered in the early morning. Although the poem is about a beach it can also give the audience contextual clues into other aspects of life.
If she wasn’t writing about death then she was writing about religion. She wanted to be able to express herself in a way that would not offend some people while including something she loved and her beliefs. 1840-1850 is known as Religious Revivalism or the Second Awakening. “This was a time when there was religious problems going around in the United States” (The Second Great Awakening). Dickinson wanted to find a way she could express her religion during this time.
In the poem “Because I could not stop for death” by Emily Dickinson, death is described as a person, and the narrator is communicating her journey with death in the afterlife. During the journey the speaker describes death as a person to accompany her during this journey. Using symbolism to show three locations that are important part of our lives. The speaker also uses imagery to show why death isn 't’ so scary.
Whitman and Dickinson share the theme of death in their work, while Whitman decides to speak of death in a more realistic point of view, Dickinson speaks of the theme in a more conceptual one. In Whitman’s poems, he likes to have a more empathic view of individuals and their ways of living. For example, in Whitman’s “Song of Myself”, the poet talks about not just of himself, but all human beings, and of how mankind works into the world and the life of it. Even though the poem mostly talks about life and the happiness of it, Whitman describes also that life itself has its ending, and that is the theme of death. For Dickinson, she is the complete opposite of happiness.
“Because I Could Not Stop For Death” by Emily Dickinson is a poem about death being personified in an odd and imaginative way. The poet has a personal encounter with Death, who is male and drives a horse-carriage. They go on a mysterious journey through time and from life to death to an afterlife. The poem begins with its first line being the title, but Emily Dickinson’s poems were written without a title and only numbered when published, after she died in 1886.
Emily Dickinson’s poetry is an essential part of American literature. Firstly, Emily’s style of poetry is largely influenced by her childhood. She grew up with her parents, a brother, and a sister. Her mother was aloof and quite possibly depressed, so Emily was closer to her father and siblings than she was to her mother.
In “Because I Could Not Stop For Death”, Emily Dickinson uses imagery and symbols to establish the cycle of life and uses examples to establish the inevitability of death. This poem describes the speaker’s journey to the afterlife with death. Dickinson uses distinct images, such as a sunset, the horses’ heads, and the carriage ride to establish the cycle of life after death. Dickinson artfully uses symbols such as a child, a field of grain, and a sunset to establish the cycle of life and its different stages. Dickinson utilizes the example of the busyness of the speaker and the death of the sun to establish the inevitability of death.
Whitman’s influential writing stems from his positive and uplifting messages. This is where Whitman was far divergent than Dickinson. Walt had tendencies to mainly use free-verse. He was a straight forward writer whom wrote lengthy pieces that revolved around the individual. Whitman's writing are depictions of individuals everyday life struggles, and how to consistently have positive outcomes the most horrid situations.
Emily Dickinson lived during a time when many would become very well acquainted with death. As such it would become a specter that was feared as it could make an appearance at any time. So looking at Dickinson 's work it seems rather interesting that taken as a collection there seems to be the tale of one character that comes to view death in a multitude of different ways throughout their life. First is the feared figure that leaves them restless, then death comes as something numbing but leaves the living to celebrate the life of the one that has passed, life as a story that is completed and finished upon death, and finally coming to see death as kind figure that takes one to a new home. this finally view is what paints death as something that is not to be feared but rather as something natural, it is the next
His works are full of realistic qualities. Moreover, they are long with deep messages, as well as well-structured and detailed. Furthermore, his poems are democratic both subject and the language which shows how intellectual was his imaginary and visual style of writing. To both Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman, the individualism in society has a huge importance which, at the same time, inspired their style of writing. Also, they accept the importance of God in connection with nature and immortality.