The Song Of Myself By Walt Whitman And Howl

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Both “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman and “Howl” by Allen Ginsberg are important pieces of American poetry. “Song of Myself” was written in the 1850’s and “Howl” was written about a century later. Both poets were part of groups that wanted to change America – the Transcendentalists and the Beats. Transcendentalists believed in the goodness of people and nature. They believe that people are at their best when they are truly independent. The Beats rejected standard values and materialism. They experimented with drugs and sexuality. Both movements tended to portray the wilderness as heavenly, while thinking that human nightlife was too showy. Both of these groups were fully American literary movements. Both poets mention nature in the poems. Both poets write about their reactions to the politics of their time. The poems were rebellions against the commonalities of their cultures. Whitman and Ginsberg both believed in democracy. They both protested against industrialization and tradition. Both poets wrote in dangerous times. They wanted to take a stand against what they thought was wrong with the world. They both wanted to take on the burden of being true to what America is really supposed to be. Both poets were gay. Also, both poets were very young at the time that they wrote these poems. Ginsberg was greatly influenced by Whitman when writing “Howl”. While writing, he was even reading some of Whitman’s poems. He wanted his world to be like how Whitman saw his own world in
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