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Caldera : poems

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Item Summary

Title: Caldera : poems
Authors: Norcross, Noel Marie
Keywords: poetry
creative writing
indigenous culture
Issue Date: Dec 2010
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2010]
Abstract: "Caldera" is an original poetry manuscript. It is a synthesis of the poet's Pacific and western background, education, and aesthetic sense; part of an ongoing discussion about ways in which non-indigenous writers can write about indigenous cultures without appropriating them; the beginning of the poet's exploration of what it means to be a writer without a clear connection to her ethnic heritage but a desire to adopt and celebrate others; and an exploration of links between form and content, art and life. The title reflects the volcanic landscape of the Hawaiian Islands; the tumultuous, simmering-below-the-surface energy of the human relationships depicted in the poems; and a sense of denouement and the aftermath of an explosive, destructive, but potentially fruitful event. While there is a central semi-autobiographical narrative, the presence of other voices and narratives adds texture and complexity. It is the intersections of these that give the work a sense of cohesion rather than an overt storyline or single topic. This has been a project of diversifying and refining the poet's style, subjects, and forms as well as finding literal and literary possibility.
Accompanying the manuscript is an essay outlining the process of writing and the goals of "Caldera." In it, the poet explores features of her poetry and how she has embraced or moved beyond them, focusing in particular on use of the lyric "I"; environment as a means of writing about the personal; cultural influences; the idea that as an adoptee, the poet is uniquely situated to adopt other cultures; and how while shifting the focus of the work from the personal, the forms and process provide a metaphor for the poet's life. The poet shows how she has used personal content to explore universal themes and to draw connections between life and writing, and how by breaking through thematic and structural boundaries and thereby mirroring some of the decisions in her personal narrative, she has advanced the work. She uses the metaphor of a Hawaiian lei to describe the project, which weaves together different strands of influence.
Description: Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2010.
Includes bibliographical references.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - English

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