The Cambridge companion to Walt Whitman, edited by Ezra Greenspan is a useful aid to all Whitman scholars and everyone interested in knowing more about Walt Whitman. This is an assembled group of essays that demonstrates a broad variety of responses to Whitman’s poetry. And at the beginning of the book there is a convenient chronology list indicating all the important facts of Whitman’s life.

Ezra Greenspan talks about the celebration and commemoration of Whitman all around the world. And there is something special in the way that these conferences are held, each in its own way. But, Greenspan claims that Whitman is a true New York poet. He is a celebrator of diversity, poet of ferries and bridges and a master of self-advertising. And furthermore he is a poet of the spoken word, a master of spoken arts. That is why there is something appropriate about the public readings of Whitman in New York City.

Even more interesting to Greenspan is the fact that Whitman always has a wide span of audience. He doesn’t limit himself to America only but spreads the word all over the world, and because of that he is a true global poet. Even the future readers and the “poets to come” are included. That is why he was never fit for the established cultural models. In this context he wanted to ensure an afterlife for himself by recording his own voice while reading his poem America. And in that sense, Ezra Greenspan collected these essays to reflect the variety of Whitman’s audience and diversity of readings. The view points are various, some are interpreting the I-you relationship, Whitman’s interest in the new arts, some deal with the influence on feminist movements, or on Latin America.

This book is a gift for the University of Novi Sad from Karen Karbiener and her WhitmaniaNS.