Day 5

Leaves of Grass Lesson Plan

Discussion of Thought Questions

  1. 1

    In "The Poet," what does Emerson think a poet will encourage in the rest of the country?

    Emerson asserts that a poet who focuses on the transcendental will encourage the rest of the country to focus similarly on the spiritual, the unseen. Emerson's idea is that having a poet changes the mindset of a country, reminds the citizens of the importance of the intangible. Is the poet, as Emerson says, a liberator? Encourage students to discuss the connection between this idea and Whitman's work.

  2. 2

    What is Emerson exhorting when he says "Doubt not, O poet, but persist. Say, 'It is in me, and shall out'"?

    Emerson's concern is that his call for the poet is...

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