What connections could be made "She Walks in Beauty" and to Dead Poet's Society?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One of the most immediate connections that can be made between the poem and the film is through the character of Mr. Keating.  When Keating asks the boys as to the reason why poetry was invented his answer is succinct:  "To woo women."  There is no better description of Byron's poem than this.  Byron's poem is the embodiment of extolling the virtue of beauty within a woman and his description of her beauty is timeless and universally applicable to any expression of both internal and external constructions of beauty.  Another connection between both works is the idea of "Carpe Diem."  The speaker in the poem is not one who will refrain or restrain from communicating how he feels about this particular woman.  There is nothing but expression and a desire to share it with both the woman and the world, something that Keating himself would have encouraged in boys like Knox and others in his class.   Finally, I would say that the idea of being able to define beauty in terms that are not solely physical is something that Keating would have encouraged the boys to do because it is not conformist and not traditional.  The ending lines to the poem suggest that the beauty evident is one in which there is a sense of communion between heaven and earth, between internal and external realities.  The beauty that is evident is not merely on the surface, as it reflects part of the soul of the woman, as well.  In this construction of beauty, Keating would be able to suggest to the boys that a true love of beauty is not one that conforms to only social standards, but rather redefines them.