Navigating the Coils
In my investigations into women's poetry and the gaze, I've encountered two powerful mythical tropes. One is Medusa, whose awesome reciprocating gaze was a protective invocation in antiquity, before Freud rewrote her as a symbol of profound lack in the 20th century. Medusa was one of three Gorgon sisters, "the protector," singled-out for mortality unlike her sisters Stheno, "forceful," and Euryale, "far-roaming." I would be proud for my work to be all three--but I acknowledge that a project with wide-ranging scope can be difficult to follow.
The second powerful mythical trope I engage is the labyrinth, or the maze, whose circular or multi-branched construction confounds sight and forces the seeker to turn inward as they journey. This site has multiple branches and turns that move off into new directions as it pursues the interconnected nature of literature, theory, and myth in its attempts to better understand women's poetry. To help you navigate this site a little easier, here are some paths you might choose.
Let me introduce you to the type of feminism I'm trying to do with videos! Applying feminism to my studies in women's poetry, I'm trying to show how revolutionary and beautiful women's poetry is, and to explore how modes of looking can shape women's poetry. I respond to the tradition of women's poetry in poems also!
Three main themes have developed during my work with women's poetry, and I'd like to present them to you as contested fields. The first is the female body; the second is women's place in myth and religious tradition. The third is the quest for a feminist gaze, which led me to examine the widespread poetic practice of ekphrasis.
I work through the implications of the gaze in several papers, and blog about some feminist critics who have made points that are important but difficult to reconcile with how I usually write poems.
Additionally, every page on this site is available through drop down menus on the top of the page, over the title "Feminism, Poetry, and Poetics." The titles displayed are pages themselves, and there are multiple pages offered underneath the main titled pages as well via drop down menu. If you need to find your way back to this page, hover your mouse over "Home" and click on "Navigating the Coils" from the drop down menu.