Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date

2017

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

English

First Advisor

Christine Stewart

Keywords

culture, ethnographic verse, ethnography, place-based poetry, poetry, supernatural

Abstract

This thesis discusses the theories of ethnography and ethnographic verse and applies these two theories in an original narrative in verse. Ethnography and ethnographic verse have a complicated relationship when it comes to a poet’s authority representing a certain place. Yet authenticity is never obtainable, since perceptions of a place are always subjective. That subjectivity allows a poet creative expression, as he or she shapes his or her relationship with a place and the people within it. The poet then must rely on elements like unifying imagery, dialect, surrealism, and empathetic insights. With these elements, a poet can identify with a community through unique descriptions and reflection that build connections between that poet and his or her subjects. I utilize these elements in my own poetry. By using the theories of ethnography and ethnographic verse, I have written a manuscript of poetry that builds upon (and even deviates) from the works of poets I looked to during my research process. This manuscript of poetry attempts to represent a group of people in a rural small town. Rural realism and supernatural surrealism both create a sense of community for readers. In the end, the manuscript of poetry aims to establish a connection between the speaker and the community. After this manuscript of poetry, I discuss the creative process that went into this thesis. I reflect upon the theories and concepts and how I have applied them in my own poetry. I then discuss works by Walt Whitman, Robert Frost, and contemporary poets like Ted Kooser and Ron Rash. Finally, I analyze how those works influenced the decisions I made while composing my narrative in verse.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Narrative poetry.
Ethnology in literature.
Community life -- Poetry.

Description

Includes bibliographical references (pages 87-89)

Format

application/pdf

Number of Pages

95

Publisher

South Dakota State University

Rights

Copyright © Adam Junker

Included in

Poetry Commons

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