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Published Writings

Index of Works

Whitman’s habit of revising—producing multiple manuscripts for a single poem, moving lines from one poem draft to another, retitling some pieces, leaving titles off others, and publishing multiple versions of works of both prose and poetry—makes tracking the relationships among versions of his works difficult. To address this challenge and make it easier for visitors to the Whitman Archive to track all the known versions of a single work, the Archive employs what we call “work IDs.” The work ID is a unique identifier that takes the form of a five-digit serial number preceded by “xxx” (e.g., xxx.12345). These identifiers are embedded in transcription files; they are also listed in an authority file, which associates each work with a title. Following the convention within Whitman studies, we use the title of the last published version (often in the 1892 “deathbed” edition of Leaves of Grass). In the cases of unpublished works, the title is derived from the version we believe to be the latest; if it was untitled by Whitman, we use the first words on the page. Clicking on a title below allows a user to produce a list of all writings, published or unpublished, that are known to be related to a given work.

It is important to note that the identification of works and versions and the implementation of the work IDs is ongoing. The Whitman Archive welcomes user suggestions about textual connections between objects in our collections.

1048 items

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