Walt Whitman (Paperback)

A Life

By Justin Kaplan

Harper Perennial Modern Classics, 9780060535117, 464pp.

Publication Date: July 8, 2003

List Price: 16.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


“Whitman emerges from this biography alive and kicking—hugely human, enormously attractive.”  —Newsweek

A moving, penetrating, sharply focused portrait of America’s greatest poet—his genius, his passions, his androgynous sensibility—an exuberant life entwined with the turbulent history of mid-nineteenth century America. In vivid detail, Justin Kaplan, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, examines the mysterious selves of this enigmatic man whose bold voice of joy and sexual liberation embraced a growing nation…and exposes the quintessential Whitman, that perfect poet whose astonishing verse made “words sing, dance, kiss, copulate” for an entire world to hear.

About the Author

Justin Kaplan is also the author of Mr. Clemens and Mark Twain, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award. He is general editor of Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is married to the novelist Anne Bernays. They have three daughters and six grandchildren, and live in Cambridge and Truro, Massachusetts.

Praise For Walt Whitman: A Life

“Whitman emerges from this biography live and kicking—hugely human, enormously attractive.”

“Not only readable, but dramatic.”
New York Times Book Review

“Kaplan gives us flesh and blood Whitman in this fine and sensitive biography.”
Boston Globe

“A buoyant, energizing book.”
— Nation

Publishers Weekly