Emily Dickinson Essay

The personality of Emily Dickinson is outstanding and mysterious, it is utterly difficult to perceive her poetry without knowing about her life path and understanding of her emotional state. Dickinson remained unrecognized during her life time and later she became famous for her innovations in forms and syntax. Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts. Her family was relatively prominent, but Dickinson lived in isolation. She studied for several years at the Amherst Academy, she attended also Mount Holyoke Female Seminary and then returned to her family house. Most of the neighbors considered the young girl to be an eccentric. She used to wear white clothes, and everybody knew about her reluctance about coming out to greet the guests, later she did not even leave her bedroom. She has never been married and her communication with friends consisted mostly of exchange of letters. Emily Dickenson was a real recluse, which did not hinder development of her outstanding poetic talent, making her produce poems, fascinating readers till nowadays with their innovative forms.

The family roots of Dickenson could be found in New England, her grandfather, Samuel Dickenson, was a founder of Amherst College and her father served as a state legislator. There were three children in the family, the middle one of which was Emily. Emily used to be an excellent student, but it was not officially informed why she left the academy. Some of the versions assumed that the main reason was her fragile emotional state. Emily started writing when she was a teenager. Her early writings were produced under the impact of Benjamin Franklin Newton and Leonard Humphrey. The first one was the friend of their family and the second one was the principal of Amherst Academy. One of the poems of this time period contained the following lines:

They shut me up in Prose –
As when a little Girl
They put me in the Closet –
Because they liked me “still” –

(Farr 1996).

The fact of Dickinson’s seclusion was explained by numerous scholars as the result of her conditions, including depression and anxiety. Also she was treated for ailment of her eyes. The period between 1850s and 1860s was the most productive in her life; she managed to create small bundles of verse, which were called fascicles. The whole period Emily spent in isolation, having the only interest in studying botany and gathering herbarium. All her friends communicated with her with the help of letters and one of them was Judge Otis Phillips Lord, who is assumed to have developed some kind of romantic relationship with Dickinson, he died in 1884.

Emily Dickinson died because of kidney disease in Massachusetts in 1886, when she was only 55. Little of her works were published only at the time of her death and even those, which were published, were edited in order for them to correspond to the standards of those times. Certainly this led to loosing of the important aspects of the poet’s form and syntax in the process of editing.

Her sister Latvinia Dickinson found hundreds of poems, written by Emily and the first volume of them was published in 1890. The readers and critics highly appreciated the poems of Emily Dickinson for her compressed and poignant verse, which had a significant impact upon the poetry in the 20th century. Her literary voice was definitely the reflection of her eccentric life and her seclusion contributed to formation of her innovative approach to poetry expressions. Emily Dickinson managed to create some kind of new American character; this character is still intriguing millions of readers worldwide.

Overall, Emily Dickinson was an outstanding poet, whose personality, as well as poetry was not highly appreciated during her life time. When her poems were published after her death, it became evident that Dickinson did not waste the time, spent in the walls of her own bedroom, being mostly isolated from the surrounding world, rather that she managed to reveal her unique talent, having to survive her personal life tragedies and concerns.

Works cited:

Farr, Judith. Emily Dickinson: A Collection of Critical Essays. Prentice Hall International Paperback Editions, 1996

The terms offer and acceptance. (2016, May 17). Retrieved from

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016.

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

freeessays.club (2016) The terms offer and acceptance [Online].
Available at:

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: November 26, 2021]
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