Poetry as Muse in Dead Poets Society

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Poetry As Muse In Dead Poets Society Poetry, which is a branch of literature, is the embodiment of words filled with vital elements directly infusing into human beings. With the realization of the motivating and illuminating power of poetry, in N.H. Kleinbaum’s Dead Poets Society, a radical change of view and perception of life is witnessed through the characters. A wide range of poetry from John Dryden to E. E. Cummings works as a magical instrument in experiencing a kind of rebirth for the leading characters of the novel. Neil Perry, Todd Anderson, Knox Overstreet, Charlie Dalton, Richard Cameron and Steven Meeks are the primary characters captivated by the wind of poetry. These characters are the students of Welton Academy, which has adopted a conventional, strict education system. However; the new English teacher John Keating, who is also graduated from Welton Academy, becomes a threat to jolt the philosophy of the academy. John Keating, whose name reminds the English romantic poet John Keats, is the main source introducing what poetry really is. Keating wants his students to call him: “’O Captain! My captain!’” (“Walt Whitman”) which were words written for Abraham Lincoln by Walt Whitman. Walt Whitman’s view about poetic inspiration, which can be a clue for the philosophy of poetry in the novel, is stated in these lines from the work of Jeffrey Wainwright The Basics of Poetry: “For Whitman poetic inspiration is part of untutored natural world” (Wainwright, 146). In the novel Keating clearly states his mind about reading poetry: “… One reads poetry because he is a member of human race, and the human race is filled with passion! …” (Kleinbaum 41). According to this statement we can see that his objective is to inject the passion of poetry to the veins of the students. Dead Poets Society, which attributes to the name of the
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