Miller, James E. A Critical Guide to "Leaves of Grass. Morgan, Charles H. Mulcaire, Terry. The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Summer, , Pollack, Vivian R. The Erotic Whitman. Price, Ken Ed. Walt Whitman: The Contemporary Reviews. Reynolds, David S. Rajasekharaiah, Raj. Schiller, Andrew. The New England Quarterly Inc.
Sutton, Walter. The American Society for Aesthetics: Dec.
Thomas, M Wynn. Trachtenberg, Alan. New York : Oxford University Press, Waskow, Howard.
The Walt Whitman Collection: Reference Works
Parry notes, however, that the Pfaffian who made the most valuable and lasting impression on Whitman was Clapp and quotes Whitman's remarks to Traubel about Clapp Parry also mentions that "Walt Whitman probably drank nothing stronger than buttermilk in Charlie's basement" Parry mentions Whitman's admiration of Ada Clare and his estimation of her as the "New Woman born too soon.
Parry also mentions Whitman's anger at Ada Clare when her romantic affairs became more public and her behavior became more scandalous and widely discussed Parry claims that Ada Clare is the first person Whitman and Pfaff toasted when they drank to the memories of the departed Bohemians when he visted Pfaff's Twenty-fourth Street restaurant in August Parry writes that at Pfaff's, rather than seat himself in the niche under the vaulted ceiling that Pfaff set up for his literary customers, Whitman often sat in the main room of the restaurant with the "uninitiated.
Parry writes that at Pfaff's Whitman "was indisputably part of the scene, but he only sat, watched, and was worshipped; no one thought of designating him chief of the Bohemians" Parry also writes of Emerson's visit to Pfaffs's with Whitman during which Emerson "called them noisy and rowdy firemen and could not understand what bonds they claimed with Walt" Parry notes that "Emerson did not know that Walt was aware of his superiority to all these ruffians, but that he loved adulation and found plenty of it at Pfaff's.
There he was the shrine to which Clapp brought the faithful" Parry also mentions that Whitman "mistook Howells for a member of the faithful and warmly shook his hand as the chaste young Ohioan was angrily leaving the cellar" Parry notes that this was not an unusual pose for Whitman to take as "he liked to play his role of a benevolent celebrity and shake strangers' hands with hearty magnificence. Parry also mentions that there are portraits of Whitman, "as he patron-sainted it at Pfaff's" Parry writes that Whitman desired all of his friends to visit him at Pfaff's, most likely to show off his personal celebrity at the saloon.
Parry claims that this is most likely why Whitman often brought young house-surgeons he met while visiting at New York Hospital down to Pfaff's with him in the evenings. Parry also writes that Clapp was especially good at maintaining and supporting Whitman's celebrity and his self-image of his celebrity at Pfaff's and among the Bohemians Parry writes that Clapp often made jokes at Whitman's expense, but that they were often in good humor.
Parry also mentions that Clapp and the Saturday Press "brought upon themselves the ire and admiration of the day for their insistence that Whitman was greater than Longfellow" Parry discusses the support Whitman got from the Saturday Press through the reviews, articles, parodies, and poems printed by Clapp. Parry also mentions that Clapp often confided his worries about the paper's finances to Whitman in their correspondence Whitman met Burroughs through Clapp and the Saturday Press.
The two men were introduced by Clapp at Pfaff's Parry also mentions that Whitman made enemies in Aldrich, Witner, Stedman, Stoddard, and Taylor through his comments to them or his behavior Parry writes about the argument at Pfaff's between Whitman and Arnold: "One night at Pfaff's he [Arnold] made the error of toasting the Southern arms. Walt sprang up. For the moment he forgot his godlike benignity and broke out with a speech of patriotic vehemence. Arnold retailiated by bending his form over and across the table and pulling hard at that Jovian brush which Howells like the best of all the Pfaffian scenery.
The rivals were separated, and it was about then that Whitman shook the Pfaffian part of Broadway's dust from his soles forever. Years later he was to say about his role at Pfaff's: 'I was much better satisfied to listen to a fight than take part in it'" Parry writes that while O'Brien was dying of his badly bandaged wound that would result in lockjaw, "Walt Whitman was not yet a war nurse; he still rode with the stage-drivers of Manhattan and viewed life from Pfaff's basement Personne reports that it appeared Walt Whitman was the only person "who does nothing as nobody ever did it before" 3.
Quelqu'un asks Whitman's pardon when he claims that "ordinary every-day love-making Whitman is mentioned throughout the book, but his connection to the Pfaff's period is limited to pages Reynolds describes Whitman in as "disaffected and drifting, a perfect candidate for bohemia. In Whitman's words,"My own greatest pleasure at Pfaff's was to look on - to see, talk little, absorb. I was never a great discusser, anyway. Drums" at Pfaff's on September 27, The entire book is about Whitman, but chapter 15 pages deal with Pfaff's. There is a fanciful description of Whitman quoting Shakespeare at Pfaff's after spending a day tending to sick and disabled stage-coach drivers Whitman was a regular visitor to Pfaff's whose status as an object of admiration kept him from truly being a member of the bohemian circle.
Whitman is mentioned throughout the book. Stansell claims that Whitman began spending time at Pfaff's after losing his job at the Brooklyn Daily Times in The restaurant became Whitman's "chief source of social intercourse" during the "long period of critical silence that followed the second edition of Leaves of Grass.
Whitman's tenure at the restaurant lasted about three years, ending in , when Whitman left for Washington after receiving notification that his brother had been wounded. Stansell also includes Whitman's own quote to Horace Trauble about how he enjoyed being more of an observer than a participant in the activities and conversation at Pfaff's. She also notes that in , those who were looking for Whitman could find him at Pfaff's, and that aside from associating with his literary acquaintances "New York writers now entirely forgotten" , he would bring young doctors he had met while visiting the ill at New York Hospital to the bar and regularly associated with the "Fred Gray Association" According to Stansell, "Whitman apparently took little part in what he called the 'rubbings and drubbings' at Pfaff's.
Stansell seeks to answer the question "What was Whitman doing at Pfaff's? Stansell reviews the popular viewpoints on this matter adding to Paul Zweig's theories the argument that "there are also suggestions that bohemia was the setting for more fruitful encounters which helped the poet gather his powers and emotional resources for the third edition of Leaves of Grass and a successful entry into the national literary scene" Stansell also highlights Justin Kaplan's observation that the bar proved an insiprational place for writing poetry and observes that while Whitman referred to this period for him as his "New York stagnation," it was during this period that he produced a "remarkable surge of new poetry" and became a public figure on a small scale with the Boston publication of Leaves of Grass Stansell notes that despite the publication of some of his fiction in the Democratic Review , Whitman was regarded as a "minor feuilletoniste , a virtual outsider in the profession of 'literariness'" in the s Stansell notes that the publication of the first edition of Leaves of Grass in earned Whitman some minor acclaim, but in , when he began going to Pfaff's, he appeared to be headed back towards the "swarm of collegues" in New York To revise the poetry, Whitman had to forgo most other work and had to live at home with his family, depriving him of an "active audience" as he had no poet friends in New York and his family was fairly disinterested in his work Stansell writes that "It was at this juncture that bohemia played a crucial role in reanimating a faltering creative venture.
In gravitating to Pfaff's, Whitman put himself for the first time in a daily relationship with writers who aspired to be a kind of work beyond Grub Street. He participated -- probably for the first time -- in self-consciously literary discussion" Stansell notes that one of the political fights that occured at Pfaff's was between Whitman and Arnold; the two men had a falling-out over some pro-Southern remarks Arnold made. Whitman would also get into a poltical argument "for defending, in his determinedly world-encompassing fashion, Queen Victoria" Stansell notes that Whitman's association with other writers at Pfaff's led to an increase in "professional certainty from his new literary friendships" that were shown in when his "dealings with editors showed a new self regard and assertiveness" According to Stansell, "For a writer who was fundamentally an outsider, that older mode of patronage proved unreliable.
Pfaff's taught him new ways to insert himself into the stream of national literary commerce, methods and strategies that did not depend on the moral approbation of the Boston literatie and that accorded better with the sensibilities of the New York pressrooms and streets" Stansell notes Ezra Greenspan's argument about "the ways in which in the s an economic and technological revolution in 'all the factors involved in the creation, manufacture, marketing, and consumption of printed works' reshaped literary culture and in particular, 'its most vociferous champion, Walt Whitman'" In discussing the newspaper trade, Stansell notes that Whitman started his career as a printer.
She also notes that by , when Whitman was 26, he had worked for ten different papers due to the constant opening and closing of the penny newspapers. Stansell also notes Greenspan's observation of "how fluid the boundaries were for Whitman and his peers between literary professional roles -- printer, reporter, editor, freelancer, periodical poet, story writer, bookseller, publisher" As one of the "Pfaffian regulars" who did "serious writing along with journalism", Whitman wrote poetry Stansell writes that "Whitman's strongest memory of Pfaff's was of 'hearing the truth' about Leaves of Grass as it came straight from Printing House Square one night.
While the printers and writers had waited around one Saturday evening for their pay, one of them, to pass the time, had pulled out a copy of Leaves of Grass and had given a mocking reading to the assemblage: 'read it, made light of it: the others, too; the strokes bright, witty, unsparing. By the time Whitman recounted the story to Traubel he was the Good Gray Poet, above vanity and resentment; he took care to assure his disciple there was no harm done Recast, the incident became a tribute to Whitman as a 'comerado.
Stansell suggests that Clapp is the party who introduced Whitman to the politics of free-love groups and their ideas; he was already familiar with several reform groups' ideas, but this new ideological set may have been a good fit for Whitman According to Stansell, during the 's, the publishers and writers of New York "were just beginning to take advantage of the possibilities the new markets offered for a publishing business free of the dominance of the Boston critics and publishers. Clapp was a leader in this process, and Whitman would in some ways be its first great success.
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Clapp's prescience lay in his comprehension of how publicity and celebrity could, within a changing literary market, obviate the need for critical and moral approval. Whitman seemed to have something of this in mind when he noted that Clapp was the writers' avant-garde, 'our pioneer, breaking ground before the public was ready to settle. Arnold's columns written under the name "McAroni," which were "burlesques on war correspondence" where Arnold took the position of "one of 'the chivalry' defending the Southern cause," would prompt an argument between Whitman and Arnold as tensions rose among the excited group at Pfaff's immediately before the Civil War 8.
Whitman worked with Richardson to lobby Congress and Gen. Grant to relax restrictions regarding prisoner exchanges and prison camps in the last few months of the war Starr quotes Whitman's description of Charles Dana during his tenure as the managing editor of the Tribune p. Whitman often saw Dana walking to work across the park from his home 90 Clinton Place to the Tribune offices During the Wilderness campaign in , Whitman wrote his mother his thoughts on the press: "The fighting has been hard enough, but the papers make lots of additional items, and a good deal they just entirely make up.
There are from to wounded coming in here -- not 6 to as the papers have it They, the papers, are determined to make up just anything" Echoing the sentiments of others who felt that the "real" war would never be reported upon, Whitman wrote: "the real war will never get in the books The actual soldier of , North and South, with all his ways, his incredible dauntlessness, habits, practices, tastes, language, his fierce friendship, his appetite, rankness, his superb strength and animality, lawless gait, and a hundred unnamed lights and shades of camp, I say, will never be written" Stovall discusses the early reviews of Leaves of Grass and the notices of publication of his poems in The Saturday Press.
Stovall also mentions that Whitman was in contact with regulars at Pfaff's and may have had assistance getting published in some New York papers.
Stovall notes that Whitman had grown tired of newspaper editors' politics, disliked housebuilding, and found Pfaff's stimulating to his sense of aesthetics. The author recalls his discussions and conversations at Pfaff's. In one letter, a Boston friend reminds Whitman of an earlier aquaintance with Jack Law. Whitman recalls early days in New York "and the faces and voices of 'the boys.
Wonderfully like the Orientals, too, considering that when I asked him if he had read them, he said, 'No: tell me about them.
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In discussing criticism and American literature, Winter states: "The complaint,--which is one that more or less touches all American literature,--proceeds now, as it has all along proceeded, from an irrational disposition, first to revert to the berserker state of feeling, and then to exact, from a new country, new forms of speech.
Thus, for example, literary authorities in England, some of them conspicuous for station and ability, have accepted, and, in some cases, have extolled beyond the verge of extravagance, one American writer, the eccentric Walt Whitman, for no better reason than because he discarded all laws of literary composition, and, instead of writing either prose or verse, composed an uncouth catalog of miscellaneous objects and images, generally commonplace, sometimes coarse, sometimes filthy.
That auctioneer's list of topics and appetites, intertwisted with a formless proclaimation of carnal propensities and universal democracy, has been hailed as grandly original and distinctively American, only because it is crude, shapeless, and vulgar. The writings of Walt Whitman, in so far as they are anything, are philosophy: they certainly are not poetry: and they do not possess even the merit of an original style; for Macpherson, with his 'Ossain' forgeries; Martin Farquhar Tupper, with his 'Proverbial Philosophy,' and Samuel Warren, with his timid 'Ode,' were extant long before the advent of Whitman.
Furthermore, Plato's writings were not unknown; while the brotherhood of man had not been proclaimed in Judea, with practical consequences that are still obvious. No author has yet made a vehicle of expression that excels, in any way whatever, or for any purpose, the blank verse of Shakespeare and Milton. In the hands of any artist who can use them the old forms of expression are abundantly adequate, and so, likewise, are the old subjects; at all events, nobody has yet discovered any theme more fruitful than the human heart, human experience, man in his relation to Nature and to God" He is listed by Winter as one of the Bohemians who frequented Pfaff's Cave Of his appearance there, Winter writes: "Walt Whitman was often there, clad in his eccentric garb of rough blue and gray fabric,--his hair and beard grizzled, his keen steel-blue eyes gazing, with bland tolerance, on the frolicsome lads around him" Winter describes Howell's first meeting with Whitman at Pfaff's.
Howells, now the voluminous and celebrated novelist, Howells, at that time, was a respectable youth, in black raiment, who had only just entered on the path to glory, while Whitman, by reason of that odiferous classic, the 'Leaves of Grass,' was in possession of the local Parnassus. The meeting, of course, was impressive.