Leaves of war

Walt Whitman and World War I

Published July 24, 2010 4:25PM (EDT)

From Christopher Benfrey's essay on three new books about Walt Whitman, in the June 24 issue of The New York Review of Books, a quote illustrating unexpected interconnectedness.

Gavrilo Princip, the Bosnian nationalist who shot Archduke Ferdinand in 1914, believed he was following Whitman's orders in brnging down kings -- "and that is how," [Czeslaw] Milosz notes wrly, "an American poet was responisble for the outbreak of World War I."

By Andrew Leonard

Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21.

MORE FROM Andrew Leonard

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

How The World Works