Revising Himself: Walt Whitman and Leaves of Grass

The publication of Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass in 1855 was the debut of a masterpiece that shifted the course of American literary history. Refreshing and bold in both theme and style, the book underwent many revisions over Whitman's lifetime, becoming an ever-transforming kaleidoscope of poems. This exhibition traces the different occupations and preparations that led Whitman to become the author of Leaves of Grass, as well as his subsequent evolution as a poet. Over almost forty years Whitman produced multiple editions of Leaves of Grass. By his death in 1892, Leaves was a thick compendium representing Whitman's vision of America over the last half of the nineteenth century.

  • The physical exhibition was on view at the Library through December 3, 2005.
  • Read a News Release on the Exhibit.

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