Emily Dickinson is considered a powerful and persistent pre-modernist poet in American culture. Emily Elizabeth Dickinson was born on December 10, 1830 in Amherst, Massachusetts on the family homestead ("Emily Dickinson"). Her mother and father were Emily and Edward Dickinson: she had a sister, Lavinia Dickinson, and a brother, William Austin Dickinson. Dickinson began attending Amherst Academy with her sister in 1840 and graduated in 1847. After graduating, she began Mount Holyoke Female Seminary in South Hadley. While she attended Mount Holyoke, she started a pattern that would continue through-out her life (Brand 15). She would attach herself to an older man and confide in him. Sending frequent letters and poems was how she communicated with him; Dickinson referred to whoever this man was at the time in her life as "master" or "preceptor". Benjamin Newton, one of her father's law students, visited the Dickinson home frequently. He and Dickinson met through this habit of his and he became her first "master". Benjamin influenced Dickinson's writing greatly; he introduced her to Ralph Waldo Emerson and encouraged her to write. After only a year at Mount Holyoke, she left the school. The reasons for her departure have been never agreed upon.
Dickinson slowly submerged herself in a life of seclusion after her school years communicating mostly through letters. She traveled with her father and sister to Washington, the furthest from home she would ever