Study Guide

Emily Dickinson Mount Holyoke & Amherst

Mount Holyoke & Amherst

After graduating from Amherst Academy in 1847, Dickinson enrolled at Mount Holyoke Female Seminary (now Mount Holyoke College). In her short time there, Dickinson stood out by refusing to take part in the school's Christian evangelical efforts. Dickinson held organized religion at arm's length all her life. She considered herself a believer, but never joined a church. "Some keep the Sabbath going to church," Dickinson wrote in a poem, "I keep it staying home." By the mid-1850s, her mother had become bedridden with various illnesses that would plague her for the rest of her life. The burden of caring for her mother was great, and confined Dickinson to the house.

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