Today is the 200th anniversary of Walt Whitman’s birthday! We recently celebrated Whitman’s birthday with our Whitman Sampler event at the end of April, which featured President Emeritus Richard Brodhead reading from Whitman’s poetry and discussing his impact.
If you want to explore the life and work of Whitman, we have one of the best collections in the country in our Rubenstein Rare Books & Manuscript Library. You can see original editions, the many drafts of his works that he created, correspondence, clippings, portraits, and scrapbooks in this collection. We even have a lock of his hair!
If you want to read some of his work, of course we have many of his books that you can check out and read at home. You might also enjoy reading a selection from the Academy of American Poets. The New York Public Library has a great page outlining some good places to start reading.
Finally I wrote a series of blog posts to highlight the “I Sing the Body Electric: Walt Whitman and the Body” exhibit that I had the great privilege of curating in 2017. You can find blog posts about Whitman and Popular Culture, Whitman and the Body, Whitman and the Civil War, and Reading Walt Whitman.