A critical biographical synthesis of Whitmaniana, through a detailed examination of original and existing material, (excepting the 1941 Frances Winwar American Giant), which results in a balanced, intelligent modern study of the man, the writer and his work. He provides illumination on the endless speculation concerning the seeds and harvest of Whitman's life, his controversial writings, and the application and interpretation of his poetry. It is clinically literary, a psychological and sociological dissection of a complicated mechanism, of an ""obdurate ego"", of the conflicts in his nature, of the morbid elements, the human affection, tolerance, tenderness. It is also an appreciation of what transcends criticism, his greatness, goodness, his real strength and meaning in literature. Designed primarily for students of literature, but not without interest for readers of literary biography, as a continuously interesting and excellent blend of biography and criticism.... Note that this is an English import, and is characteristic of the way in which English publishers are overcoming the hurdles of shortages we have not yet had to face. Perhaps the trend towards books in smaller compass which necessity has forced upon them will prove popular with the American readers.