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Poems at the Edge of Differences

Mothering in New English Poetry by Women

Renate Papke

214 pages
University of Akron Press
This study consists of two parts. The first part offers an overview of feminism's theory of differences. The second part deals with the textual analysis of poems about mothering by women from India, the Caribbean, and Africa. Literary criticism has dealt with the representation of mothering in prose texts, but the exploration of lyrical texts has yet to come. Since the late 1970s, the acknowledgment of and the commitment to difference has been foundational for feminist theory and activism. The comprehensive theoretical discussion of feminism's different concepts of gender, race, ethnicity, and mothering builds the foundation for the main part: the presentation and analysis of the poems. This study does not intend to specify mothering as a universal and unique feminine characteristic. It underlines a metaphorical use and discusses the concepts of nurturing, maternal practice, and social parenthood. Most of all, it aims at initiating a dialogue and interchange between scholars and students in the West and the Third World.
Author Bio
Renate Papke was a reseracher at the University of Goettingen, Germany.