American Experience (1988– )
7.0/10
36
1 user 1 critic
Walt Whitman (1819-1892) is today one of the most-recognized figures in American literary history: poet, patriot and faithful advocate of democracy. His name graces shopping malls, highway rest stops, and local high schools.

Director:

Mark Zwonitzer

Writers:

Walt Whitman (original), Mark Zwonitzer
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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Clayton Boyd ... Lover
Saluda Camp ... Lover
Chris Cooper ... Walt Whitman (voice)
Vincent J. Earnshaw Vincent J. Earnshaw ... Buisness Man
Judith Kalaora Judith Kalaora ... Bar Maid
Ryan McVeigh Ryan McVeigh ... Lover
Tony Moreira Tony Moreira ... Dock Worker
J.K. Simmons ... Narrator
Walt Whitman ... Self (archive footage)
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Storyline

Walt Whitman (1819-1892) is today one of the most-recognized figures in American literary history: poet, patriot and faithful advocate of democracy. His name graces shopping malls, highway rest stops, and local high schools. He has adherents around the globe. But in his own time, critics denounced Walt Whitman as a "lunatic raving in pitiable delirium." They pronounced his signature book of poetry, Leaves of Grass, "slimy," "vile," and "beastly." One reviewer wished to see him whipped in public; another suggested he commit suicide. He was famously "banned in Boston." "I am the poet of the body and I am the poet of the soul. I go with the slaves of the earth equally with the masters. And I will stand between the master and the slaves, entering into both so that both will understand me alike." - Walt Whitman. Written by Ulf Kjell Gür

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User Reviews

 
Best if you love poetry...
20 March 2012 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

I don't know why, but there is no narrator listed here in the credits. It sure sounded like J.K. Simmons---an actor who seems to be VERY popular on TV and in commercials in recent years. So, when the credit rolled at the end, I saw it was correct--it was Simmons (in case you care).

As far as how enjoyable this show is, it all depends very strongly on whether or not you love poetry. If you adore it, you'll probably adore the show. If you are a plebeian (like me), you will probably be bored--not just because Walt Whitman was a poet but, uncharacteristic of the series, you have lots of folks reciting Whitman's work. In addition to this, the show has the usual interviews, pictures and narration--all discussing Whitman's work and life. The only part that really appealed to me was discussing the erotic and homo-erotic aspects of Whitman's seminal work, "Leaves of Grass". Interesting...but still not enough to keep me interested. Not a badly made episode--but one with somewhat limited interest to the average person.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 April 2008 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Color:

Color
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