Summary and analysis of I Hear America Singing by Walt Whitman

INTRODUCTION TO WALT WHITMAN-

Born on 31 May in the year 1819, Walt Whitman is considered among one of the most important poets of the American literature. Whitman’s works are based on varying genres with no particular genre being too favored.

I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

“I Hear America Singing” by Walt Whitman can be considered as a patriotic poem dedicated to the American nation and the Americans who are responsible for the existence and the working of the nation.

SETTING OF I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

The poem has no particular physical setting. From a larger view point, it can be said that the poem is set on American soil, as it is a dedication to the Americans.


POETIC DEVICES IN I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

ALLITERATION-
“The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat”
REPETITION
The repetition of the word “singing”

SUMMARY OF I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

The speaker says that he hears America singing, “varied carols” is representative of the fact that America is a nation of diversity and liberty. The poet draws the image of the people of American, working their varied jobs while singing and enjoying themselves. The mechanic singing in a powerful and blithe voice, the carpenter singing while measuring the plank, the boatman singing about his boat, similarly the deckhand sings from his steamboat. The shoemaker sings while he sits on the bench mending or making shoes. The wood cutter or the plough-boy sing in the morning while leaving for work or in the noon during intermission. The women folk sing too, a mother, a young wife or young girls singing while sewing and cooking, going about their chores. Each of them sing, and these songs belong to them and are theirs alone. The days are spent working hard while the nights are for celebrations and parties for the youngsters and friends. They sing freely, their joyous, melodious songs.

CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

The poem is a dedication to the people who make America and are the reason for America’s existence and flourishing. The poet acknowledges the people from all strata of the society. Each of them is praised for their hard work that contributes in the growth of America and the American culture.

TONE OF I HEAR AMERICA SINGING-

The tone of the poem is joyous and happy, the poet expressing his sense of pride over the hardworking Americans.

CONCLUSION-

This poem is a beautiful composition which establishes America as a nation of integrity, liberty and diversity.
Contributor: Radhika Goel