The Language of Emily Dickinson provides valuable insight into the cryptic, complex, and unique language of America’s premier poet. The essays make each subject of exploration accessible to general readers, providing sufficient background and contextual information to situate anyone interested in a better understanding of Dickinson’s language. The collection also makes a substantial contribution to Dickinson studies with new scholarship in philology, musicality, and manuscript study. Cynthia L. Hallen, creator of the invaluable Emily Dickinson Lexicon, offers a detailed examination of Dickinson’s words and phrases that are lexically alive and semantically vital. Nicole Panizza, an accomplished pianist, explores Dickinson’s poetic relationship with music as bilingual practice. Holly L. Norton outlines the surprising connections between Dickinson’s poetry and rap music, and Trisha Kannan contributes to recent discussions regarding Dickinson’s fascicles, the manuscript “books” that contain just over 800 of Dickinson’s 1,789 poems, by reading Fascicle 30 in relation to the work and life of John Keats.
This book will be of interest to scholars of Emily Dickinson and advanced readers of poetry—such as those in upper-level undergraduate English courses and graduate students in departments of English—as well as to general readers with an interest in Emily Dickinson.
About the Author
Trisha Kannan received her PhD in English from the University of Florida in 2011. Her dissertation, The Publics of Emily Dickinson, examines the discursive publics created by Dickinson's texts, including the printed periodical poems, the letters and letter-poems, and the fascicles. Her article, "Not 'me - but a supposed person': Emily Dickinson's Non-Referential Correspondence," appeared in the first volume of Authorship, an international journal exploring historical and discursive settings of authorship. Dr. Kannan left academia in 2013 to pursue a career in writing and editing, and she now owns and operates Concision Matters, an assessment and curriculum development company that serves students and teachers nationwide.
Table of Contents
List of Tables
List of Figures
Chapter 1 Dickinson’s Breath of Life
Cynthia L. Hallen
Brigham Young University
Emily Dickinson and Noah Webster’s Collocations
A Digital Account of Emily Dickinson’s Nouns
Emily Dickinson’s Person Names
Emily Dickinson’s Kennings
Metonymy in Emily Dickinson’s Verse
Love, Light, and the Breath of Life
Chapter 2 “Syllables of Velvet, Sentences of Plush”: Emily Dickinson as Polyglot
Spatial Improvisations – Emily Dickinson’s “Lyric
Dickinson’s Music Training
Dickinson’s Music-Making in the Home
“In adequate Music there is a Major and a Minor”
“I can improvise better at night” – Emily Dickinson’s “riffs”
Chapter 3 The Notorious E.E.D.: Rap in the Poems of Emily Dickinson
University of Northwestern Ohio
Chapter 4 “Some seek in Art –”: Language and Literary Influence in Fascicle 30
What Are the Fascicles?
Fascicle 30 and Literary Influence
Sheet Four: Immortal Poets and Sources of Inspiration
Sheet Five: Poems of Nature and Experience
Sheet Six: The Power of Pain
Sheet One: Nature’s Ephemeral Beauty
Sheet Two: Poetic Inspiration and the Power of Language
Sheet Three: The Power of Failure