Emily Dickinson in Her Room

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Emily Dickinson in Her Room

Post  proey on Fri May 15, 2009 12:40 am

Emily Dickinson made a choice to stay boxed up in a small room with a window overlooking a garden. Why? Well, in "The Soul Selects Her Own Society," she expresses that she, or people in general, has seen it all and chose to withdraw into that one narrow viewpoint. Despite not having come out to experience the world much, Dickinson seems to express a deep wisdom through her poems.

Perhaps one does not need to go out and do things in order to gain experience of them. In her biography, it is said that "her personality, almost as intense and highly charged as her poetry, made him [Higginson] uncomfortably tired." This gives the idea that Dickinson was experiencing through her mind, and through her Intuitive connection to the universal essence. Her radiating energy, or aura, could have been super strong due to how much she had developed her inner being in the seclusion of her room. I think she believed that the experience she could gain out in the world is tainted by all the superficial elements that society has added to it--that experience could not be found in its purest form. So, in that one room, she had what she needed: herself, and a window letting in the sun and nature from the garden--something to connect to.

The Emily Dickinson poems that our literature book presents encompass a myriad of human emotions, both positive and negative. "I Took My Power in My Hand" shows a lack of self-confidence and a bitter defeat, while "Success Is Counted Sweetest" shows an unexpected triumph. Emerson himself had said that Transcendentalism lacked a substantial explanation for evil, pessimism, and those negative feelings. Therefore, we cannot conclude that Dickinson is purely a Transcendentalist. She shows some Anti-Transcendentalism in her poems, constantly doubting the reach of "unlimited" potential. For example, "Apparently With No Surprise" expresses a sense of an unchangeable fate of something beautiful to be destroyed.

Despite what people say about being secluded in a room for years, Emily Dickinson's room was not a suppressive confinement with four walls. It actually seemed more like a nurturing nest in which her thoughts grew exponentially and took her pen and paper to new heights that she may have not achieved had she gone out into society more.
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Re: Emily Dickinson in Her Room

Post  Philly_CS on Fri May 15, 2009 1:28 am

I love how you said Emily Dickinson has this developed (super strong) aura made Higginson tired. When one connects with the universal essence, I've always thought that the person would seem like it is the world (cause in a way, it is). Instead of getting drained, I would think that we would feel more connected with the world when we talk with someone like that. I dunno. Maybe I'm bringing in too much of Siddhartha into this discussion. The myriad of emotions that her poems seem to contain is just a result of her connectedness with everything. Since she is connected with everything, that means that she feels sorrow, ectasy, thrill, shock, boredom, and all the emotions at the same time, wouldn't she? That means that even without having to experience that particular feeling, she would still know that feeling, despite not having felt it before (darn it, it just sounds so darn paradoxical). Though the room does leave a question for a thought: If Emily Dickinson thought "that the experience she could gain out in the world is tainted by all the superficial elements that society has added to it," why doesn't she just seal the window off and just connect with everything without the physical view of the outside world?

Ah gee, the more tired I get, the more diluted my ideas get...
But alas! I am done!
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