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Some kind of NF.
 

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Some reflections on quotations I underlined in Leaves of Grass (Penguin Classics version), which I read a bit ago.

"Their Presidents shall not be their common referee so much as their poets shall." (p.8)
"The greatest poet hardly knows pettiness or triviality. If he breathes into any thing that was before thought small it dilates with the grandeur and life of the universe" (9)
"Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church in any book...the greatest poet..." (10-11)
"The greatest poet does not moralize or make applications of morals... he knows the soul." (12)

"The pleasures of heaven are with me, and the pains of hell are with me...The first I graft and increase upon myself... the latter I translate into a new tongue." (44)

"Logic and sermons never convince, The damp of the night drives deeper into my soul." (54)
"I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journeywork of the stars." (55)

"And as to you life, I reckon you are the leavings of many deaths, No doubt I have died myself ten thousand times before." (84)
"It is not chaos or death... it is form and union and plan... it is eternal life... it is happiness." (85)
"Do I contradict myself? Very well then...I contradict myself; I am large... I contain multitudes." (85)

"..and we affect each other without ever seeing each other, and never perhaps to see each other, is every bit as wonderful." (141)


These ring of Fi, Ne, Si, Te. I say he is INFP.
I will say you also get some Se with Walt Whitman when he takes on the "now" or the "moment".
But I think far and away he smells of a young, curious, Innocent, INFP.
I see Fi when he describes the innate truth or beauty and being of things.
Si when he grows fond of the eternal.
 

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Maybe INFJ.

I feel like he's very big-picture Ni and warm and fuzzy Fe. I tried reading leaves of grass, but it started sounding like a religious text because it is very directive (as the above quotes indicate, it is full of instructions, which strikes me as very judger-y also).
 

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I think of him as an Ne type... ENXP.

All of this is just from looking over some biographies about him--as well as I wrote a paper on Leaves of Grass once, so did some research then.

One thing I remember someone saying of him was that he would often flip through books, and just read little sections--he didn't have to methodically pour through them (though I'm sure he did with some).

He also went against the grain a lot--both when he was a journalist and also with Leaves of Grass, in which he bucked literary convention. He also went against social convention and was very inclusive of working class people, women, and generally humble in that way (though also described as vain and self-absorbed by critics).

He had firm beliefs about politics that seemed extreme to others, but he talked passionately about. He sometimes got in trouble when a journalist, because of his support for these extreme positions.

He preferred not to drink out of glasses, unless he was at a table with others, and instead would drink directly out of his water pitcher or bottle of sherry or rum. So he didn't care too much for etiquette in that way. And he was also friends with many people of various walks of life, and greeted people with very casual/informal greetings such as 'howdy,' and 'so long' which was an idiom he associated with prostitutes and sailors (or something...I'm taking this from a biography).

He was described as very 'masculine' in appearance, but had a 'feminine' motherly quality (it is speculated Whitman was gay or bisexual, which might explain why he could have been described in these terms) and he kept a bowl of flowers by him in all seasons. And he would wear rough, unbleached linen that was open to the chest, with no tie.

He kept all kinds of papers for years--letters, bills, drafted letters, and so he basically had paper littering his room...homemade notebooks, piles of various types of paper, newspaper articles, photographs...which 'churned into a widening semicircle around his chair, seeped into the corners of his room and under furniture, and was tracked out into the hallway.'

He was, according to critics of his time, very much promoting himself without reservation. He used a personal letter from Emerson to promote himself (or his book--really), wrote newspaper articles about himself, planted stories about himself, and even reviewed his own book.

He just seems very flexible and inclusive, but also he has strong sort of persistent values for diversity in people, of originality and bucking conventions. But leaves of grass really rambles and it reminds me of Ne soaring over the landscape or something.

He could be an INFJ, I guess. He seems like some intuition dom to me...so ENFP or INFJ, probably.
 

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@Meltedsorbet

Wow thanks, this is so much more to take in.
I'm going to say he's an NFP then, being a champion for the down-trodden and taking issue with injustice and things that aren't pure or authentic. I'm not sure I found any Ti in him, but I may be victim to confirmation bias if I inadvertently cherry-picked his quotations pertinent.


When I think of NTP authors like Voltaire (I am convinced he is ENTP)
I find they promote their own values through many a character and many a scheme.
Of course! It is the very nature of Leaves of Grass to be such a personal piece but there is a reason it is the most defining piece, his magnum opus si vis. This isn't to say TP authors don't write firsthand narratives, I'm just saying.
 

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@Meltedsorbet

Wow thanks, this is so much more to take in.
I'm going to say he's an NFP then, being a champion for the down-trodden and taking issue with injustice and things that aren't pure or authentic. I'm not sure I found any Ti in him, but I may be victim to confirmation bias if I inadvertently cherry-picked his quotations pertinent.


When I think of NTP authors like Voltaire (I am convinced he is ENTP)
I find they promote their own values through many a character and many a scheme.
Of course! It is the very nature of Leaves of Grass to be such a personal piece but there is a reason it is the most defining piece, his magnum opus si vis. This isn't to say TP authors don't write firsthand narratives, I'm just saying.
Yeah--Leaves of Grass is very ambitious for its time. It's basically Whitman saying 'screw literary conventions' and including everyone. He certainly wasn't perfect, and he did express racist notions at times outside of his poetry (though they were incredibly common around him and also based on scientific theory and speculation at the time), but his poetry was very inclusive. I like the way it was described as 'casting a wide net--gender, sexuality, and race are all part of that.' It's very ambitious in how idyllic it is, despite how much inequality and violence was happening in his time.

Even the prose he uses are inclusive, as many people (outside of wealthy white men) didn't have access to poetic theory or a great understanding of how to analyze poetry...so he brought it from a more elite style into one that speaks to everyone. A lot of earlier poetry is about hidden messages--it can be unpacked by those who know the specific classical references, and can have an elitist flavor. Whitman's poetry is absolutely not about that.

So he could be INFJ as well, as it's hard to separate Whitman's image from his actual personality. But I would see him as open minded and desiring to connect on some deeper, intimate level, with everyone (with also a lot of focus on perceiving stuff--experiencing meaningful moments), a characteristic that I think is common with NFP. So I still think ENFP or INFJ.

I like Whitman, though I tend to identify more with INFP poets more like Keats or Virginia Woolf. Whitman has a very sensual, overwhelming kind of energy to his writing, though it's also very mystical in Leaves of Grass...and more focused outwardly--perhaps Fe-Ni or Ne-Si. So idk.

I wrote a paper on how he identified with Osiris...as the god of fertility. It's interesting to me how inspired he was from mythology and how that interacted with his identity because I also really enjoy that. But a lot of the references seemed scattered more like Ne-Si imo than Ni-Se. Like Emily Dickinson is much more precise (Ni) with the symbolism in her poems, I think. Her style is tricky (maybe Ti). Whitman's seems more open to many applications (Ne).
 

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So he could be INFJ as well, as it's hard to separate Whitman's image from his actual personality. But I would see him as open minded and desiring to connect on some deeper, intimate level, with everyone (with also a lot of focus on perceiving stuff--experiencing meaningful moments), a characteristic that I think is common with NFP. So I still think ENFP or INFJ.

I like Whitman, though I tend to identify more with INFP poets more like Keats or Virginia Woolf. Whitman has a very sensual, overwhelming kind of energy to his writing, though it's also very mystical in Leaves of Grass...and more focused outwardly--perhaps Fe-Ni or Ne-Si. So idk.

I wrote a paper on how he identified with Osiris...as the god of fertility. It's interesting to me how inspired he was from mythology and how that interacted with his identity because I also really enjoy that. But a lot of the references seemed scattered more like Ne-Si imo than Ni-Se. Like Emily Dickinson is much more precise (Ni) with the symbolism in her poems, I think. Her style is tricky (maybe Ti). Whitman's seems more open to many applications (Ne).
Sounds like he's a 4w!

"Very sensual, overwhelming kind of energy." This sounds Ne dom to me. ENFP specifically, I am one, and I find this exact kind of energy comes through me in a sort of exhibitionist way, in a showy, vibrant way (in extremes, hyperse(x/ns)ual).

Cool connection. I'm wondering if perhaps his motherly qualities, or wanting to see himself as a nurturer was more the object of his envy and not of his own word?
 
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