My final project examines Whitman’s ideal of motherhood in relationship to his desire to create the ideal nation.

I propose that women to Whitman were necessary tools in his creation of the ideal nation.   Influenced by early eugenic thinkers, Whitman needed women to fulfill his dream of creating a perfect nation of physically fit and intelligent beings capable of understanding the unifying purpose of his poetry.

I analyze 3 poems based on their chronological composition to reveal eugenic influences in his writing:

A Woman Waits for Me

Democratic Vistas

With All Thy Gifts America

I conclude stating that: The woman reader could rejoice in the admiration Whitman had for her reproductive ability.  However, women should take caution, for behind the praise is an over-zealous American who prefers what the womb can offer rather than the person attached to it.