Emily Dickinson is a foremother of women writers. However, women searching for a model of independence have not recognized the power and knowledge of Emily Dickinson and consequently have ignored a primary source of sustenance. In "Vesuvius at Home: The Power of Emily Dickinson," Adrienne Rich remarks: "I have been surprised at how narrowly her work, still, is known by women who are writing poetry, how much her legend has gotten in the way of her being re-possessed, as a source and a foremother" (59). Dickinson preserved her struggle for mental independence in her poetry, and this record serves as a diary of the challenges, the pains, and the joys that a woman experiences when she attempts to know her soul. By exploring Dickinson's struggles, her defeats and victories, a person gains a valuable source of knowledge in a woman's search for her creative self.



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