Blogs tagged "Massachusetts"

Henry David Thoreau at 200

Walden Pond in late June. 27 June 2012
"As things turned out, Thoreau, very likely without knowing what he was up to, took man's relation to Nature and man's dilemma in society and man's capacity for elevating his spirit and he beat all these matters together, in a wild free interval of self-justification and delight, and produced an original omelette from which people can draw nourishment in a hungry day." —E.B. White, "A Slight Sound at Evening"Read More »

Engaging with Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson’s study in his home in Concord Museum, Concord, Massachusett
This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.—Ralph Waldo Emerson, The American Scholar speechRalph Waldo Emerson is an exemplary author whose essays may be used to fulfill the ELA informational texts requirement for the Common Core. Here are some ways teachers can engage 21st-century students with Emerson’s thinking and rhetoric.Read More »

Emily Dickinson's The Language of Flowers

The Rose_The Myrtle_The Ivy.” Illustrated plate from The Language of flowers
How oft does an emblem-bud silently tell What language could never speak half so well!—Louisa Anne Twamley, Romance of Nature (1836)As this quote suggests, in the 19th century, flowers and their hidden meanings often spoke more powerfully than words—conveying the underlying emotions and sentiments of the sender—but Emily Dickinson gardener/poet had a profound mastery of both!Read More »

A Valentine from Emily

Detail Victorian Valentine. Brooklyn Museum
Valentine's Day in mid-19th-century America was a week-long celebration of friendship. In that era, the week leading up to February 14 was filled with exchanges of witty, whimsical, hand-written notes between friends who were not always romantically involved.Emily Dickinson was no exception. During Valentine’s week, 1850, the 20-year old writer penned this couplet, which opens a longer poem that was delivered to Elbridge Bowdoin, a law partner of her father and a family-friend.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings

Witch-Hunting in Salem Village

Matteson painting inspired by Salem Witch trails depiciting courtroom drama
Witchcraft was hung, in History,But History and IFind all the Witchcraft that we needAround us, every Day —Emily Dickinson (poem 1583)October is here. As the days begin to shorten and late afternoon shadows grown long, we prepare for Halloween. Our fascination with the supernatural in all its frightening aspects seems to peak this time of year.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings