The Soul selects her own Society— Questions and Answers
by Emily Dickinson

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In "The Soul selects her own Society," how does the soul shut out those she does not choose?

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The condition of the soul that Dickinson reveals is one in which the soul makes a commitment to something or someone and does not waver in this commitment.  Dickinson's vision of the soul is a binding one, a realm in which choice is adhered and there is absolute loyalty towards such action.  The soul is shown to be one in which a privileged few is much more admired than a tepid majority.  It is here in which one sees how the soul is able to "shut the door" to that which she does not choose.  The soul remains "unmoved" as it remains committed to its choices and rejects all others.  It finds a sense of comfort in its choice and through loyalty to such choice, it is able to resist the lure of other elements.  As it chooses one "from an ample nation," it is able to close off all other lures because it recognizes the choice it made and the need to stand with such a decision.  As social orders seek to confuse the issue and attempt to dilute the power of a decision made and choice secured, Dickinson's construction of the soul is one impermeable to such temptation and one that stands secure in the authenticity of choice.  It is here where one sees that soul is able to shut out that which is not chosen.

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