Wednesday, during Seminar, we began by discussing Walt Whitman’s Crossing Brooklyn Ferry. I like discussing poetry together in the class as a discussion, because I get to see certain elements that I would not have noticed otherwise. We learned about how his writing reflected the romanticism era in literature. Once I understood what the ideas of this era consisted of, I was able to tie certain details back to the poem. Also, I could infer certain details about the speaker. We also discussed the era of realism, when people began to question things such as their roles in life. They wanted to make a real change. This prompted the idea of realism, where novels reflected reality and not just the classic fiction ideas that dominated the earlier centuries. Dracula, Frankenstein, and other works were released, and they depicted the darker side to humanity. Characters were shown as having deceiving personalities.
After we had a thorough understanding of the two time periods in literature, we continued our discussion of Crossing Brooklyn Ferry. Having written a blog on it earlier, I understood what each stanza meant. I had already tied certain feelings to the poem. However discussing it with the class brought many new ideas to light, and these ideas were something that I would not have thought of on my own.
I noticed that the starting words within each stanza were repetitive. We then learned that writers use this technique to convey feelings of irritability, anger, or serenity. Discussing the poem together helped answer some of the questions I had about the vague perspectives that were apparent to me throughout the poem.