This essay The Life Of Emily Dickens has a total of 1166 words and 14 pages.
The Life of Emily Dickens
Emily Dickinson was raised in a traditional New
England home in the mid 1800's. Her father along with the
rest of the family had become Christians and she alone
decided to rebel against that and reject the Church. She
like many of her contemporaries had rejected the traditional
views in life and adopted the new transcendental outlook.
Massachusetts, the state where Emily was born and
raised in, before the transcendental period was the
epicenter of religious practice. Founded by the puritans,
the feeling of the avenging had never left the people.
After all of the "Great Awakenings" and religious revivals
the people of New England began to question the old ways.
What used to be the focal point of all lives was now under
speculation and often doubted. People began to search for
new meanings in life. People like Emerson and Thoreau
believed that answers lie in the individual. Emerson set
the tone for the era when he said, "Whoso would be a
[hu]man, must be a non-conformist." Emily Dickinson
believed and practiced this philosophy.
When she was young she was brought up by a stern and
austere father. In her childhood she was shy and already
different from the others. Like all the Dickinson children,
male or female, Emily was sent for formal education in
Amherst Academy. After attending Amherst Academy with
conscientious thinkers such as Helen Hunt Jackson, and after
reading many of Emerson's essays, she began to develop into
a free willed person. Many of her friends had converted to
Christianity, her family was also putting enormous
amount of pressure for her to convert. No longer the
submissive youngster she would not bend her will on such
issues as religion, literature and personal associations.
She maintained a correspondence with Rev. Charles
Wadsworth over a subeztial period of time. Even though
she rejected the Church as a entity she never did reject or
accept God. Wadsworth appealed to her because he had an
incredibly powerful mind and deep emotions. When he left
the East in 1861 Emily was scarred and expressed her deep
sorrow in three successive poems in the following years.
They were never romantically involved but their relationship
was apparently so profound that Emily's feelings for him she
sealed herself from the outside world.
Her life became filled with gloom and despair until
she met Judge Otis P. Lord late in her life. Realizing that
they were well into their lives they never were married.
When Lord passed away Emily's health condition which has
been hindered since childhood worsened.
In Emily's life the most important things to her
were love, religion, individuality and nature. When
discussing these themes she followed her lifestyle and broke
away from traditional forms of writing and wrote with an
intense energy and complexity never seen before and rarely
seen today. She was a rarity not only because of her poetry
but because she was one of the first female pioneers into
the field of poetry.
Emily often speaks of love in her poems, but she did
it in such a way that would make people not want to fall in
love. She writes of parting, separation and loss. This is
supported by the experiences she felt with Wadsworth and
Otis P. Lord.
Not with a club the heart is broken,
nor with a stone;
A whip so small you could not see it,
This seems to be an actual account of the emotions she
experienced during her relationship with Otis Lord.
Individuality played a pervasive role in her life as
a result of her bout with separation. Emily did not conform
to society. She did not believe it was society's place to
dictate to her how she should lead her life. Her poems
reflect this sense of rebellion and revolution against
From all the jails the boys and girls
Beloved, only afternoon
That prison doesn't keep.
In this poem Emily shows her feelings towards formalized
schooling. Being a product of reputable college one would
think that she would be in favor of this. But as her
beliefs in transcendentalism grew so did her belief in
Emily also went against the Church which was an
extreme rarity of the time. Similar to many other that
shared her beliefs she too did not think that a set religion
was the way
Topics Related to The Life Of Emily Dickens
Lecturers, Emily Dickinson, Henry David Thoreau, Emily, Charles Dickens, Dickens, helen hunt jackson, emily dickens, charles wadsworth, religious revivals, emily dickinson, non conformist, great awakenings, personal associations, willed person, hu man, religious practice, helen hunt, formal education, puritans, epicenter, thoreau, transcendental period, contemporaries, youngster, focal point
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