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What did Walt Whitman write about that had to do with his life?

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user5901515 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 27, 2013 at 6:08 AM via web

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What did Walt Whitman write about that had to do with his life?

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e-martin | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 27, 2013 at 5:43 PM (Answer #1)

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One particular aspect of Whitman's autobiography is found in his work, Drum-Taps. This section of Leaves of Grass relates some of Whitman's experiences in the war. 

During the war, Whitman worked as a journalist and volunteer, spending time with soldiers.

He participated in the war by ministering to the wounded, writing accounts for the New York and Brooklyn newspapers, and composing his Drum-Taps poems, which he printed in 1865.

The poems of this collection express the honors and the horrors of war. Whitman's personal experiences are fused with a larger sense of the American views on the war, its nature, necessity and suffering. 

He writes of his experiences watching men die, in particular. These experiences and this collection of poems preceded the book of poems celebrating Abraham Lincoln after his death.

It is in Drum-Taps, however, that Whitman's autobiography is more clearly on display, relating his personal opinions, personal experiences, and making his real person a character in the poetry.

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