The talk will focus on a pair of or 19th-century poems in which a celebrated author aims to define America and its unique promise but somehow underscores the inequities and struggles that still haunt our society in the 21st Century.
William Cullen Bryant, “The Prairies” (1834): A celebration of westward expansion that rewrites the past to justify and secure the
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “A Jewish Cemetery at Newport” (1854): A poem that seems to tell a decidedly American tale: a journey, driven by religious persecution, to the “new world” to worship as they wish. But is it?
Dr. Gilbert L. Gigliotti is a professor of English and Latin at Central Connecticut State University and the host for almost three decades of “Frank, Gil, and Friends” every Tuesday morning on WFCS 107.7 FM and wfcsradio.com. He earned his PhD in comparative literature at The Catholic University of America. His books on Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner belie his more traditional academic interests in early American poets like Anne Bradstreet and Phillis Wheatley, the late 18th-century writers The Connecticut Wits, and the literature of ancient Greece and Rome.