Leaves of Grass. 150th Anniversary Edition

Walt Whitman. Edited and with an Afterword By David S. Reynolds

Published by Oxford University Press, 2005
ISBN 10: 0195183428 / ISBN 13: 9780195183429
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hard cover in dust jacket., no flaws or wear. clean, no markings anywhere. tight binding. appears unused.; xvi-167pp., b/w frontis of whitman. reissues poem, whitman/emerson letters, editor's afterword. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: As featured in AMC's Breaking Bad, given by Gale Boetticher to Walter White and discovered by Hank Schrader.

"I celebrate myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease....observing a spear of summer grass."

So begins Leaves of Grass, the first great American poem and indeed, to this day, the greatest and most essentially American poem in all our national literature.

The publication of Leaves of Grass in July 1855 was a landmark event in literary history. Ralph Waldo Emerson judged the book "the most extraordinary piece of wit and wisdom America has yet contributed." Nothing like the volume had ever appeared before. Everything about it--the unusual jacket and title page, the exuberant preface, the twelve free-flowing, untitled poems embracing every realm of experience--was new. The 1855 edition broke new ground in its relaxed style, which prefigured free verse; in its sexual candor; in its images of racial bonding and democratic togetherness; and in the intensity of its affirmation of the sanctity of the physical world.

This Anniversary Edition captures the typeface, design and layout of the original edition supervised by Whitman himself. Today's readers get a sense of the "ur-text" of Leaves of Grass, the first version of this historic volume, before Whitman made many revisions of both format and style. The volume also boasts an afterword by Whitman authority David Reynolds, in which he discusses the 1855 edition in its social and cultural contexts: its background, its reception, and its contributions to literary history. There is also an appendix containing the early responses to the volume, including Emerson's letter, Whitman's three self-reviews, and the twenty other known reviews published in various newspapers and magazines.

This special volume will be a must-have keepsake for fans of Whitman and lovers of American poetry.

From the Publisher: One of the great innovative figures in American letters, Walt Whitman created a daringly new kind of poetry that became a major force in world literature. Leaves Of Grass is his one book. First published in 1855 with only twelve poems, it was greeted by Ralph Waldo Emerson as "the wonderful gift . . . the most extraordinary piece of wit and wisdom that America has yet contributed." Over the course of Whitman's life, the book reappeared in many versions, expanded and transformed as the author's experiences and the nation's history changed and grew. Whitman's ambition was to creates something uniquely American. In that he succeeded. His poems have been woven into the very fabric of the American character. From his solemn masterpieces "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd" and "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking" to the joyous freedom of "Song of Myself," "I Sing the Body Electric," and "Song of the Open Road," Whitman's work lives on, an inspiration to the poets of later generations.

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Leaves of Grass. 150th Anniversary Edition
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication Date: 2005
Binding: Hard Cover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: First Edition and First Printing Thus.

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