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Louisiana Creole Poets of the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries

Louisiana Creole Poets of the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries

Chapter:
(p.168) Chapter Thirteen Louisiana Creole Poets of the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries
Source:
Louisiana Creole Literature
Author(s):
Catharine Savage Brosman
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781617039102.003.0013

This chapter considers initially how past literary products and contemporary ones are inevitably judged differently. It then reviews the attraction that poetry had for the Free People of Color and considers why their descendants have been drawn to it especially. The connections between poetry and jazz are noted, as well as the strong preference for free verse by all today’s Creole poets. The New Orleans literary milieu is sketched: the Free Southern Theatre, supportive bookstores, poetry clubs, presses, anthologies. Several black poets of Creole heritage receive close attention: in chronological order, Bob Kaufman, Brenda Marie Osbey (whose 2012 book History is criticized), Mona Lisa Saloy, Sybil Kein, Arthur Pfister. White poets of Creole heritage or connected to Creoles are Sheryl St. Germain, Katherine Soniat, and Lee Grue (certain other poets mentioned briefly for the sake of completeness have only tenuous connections with the Creole world).

Keywords:   Poetry and jazz, Free verse, New Orleans literary milieu, Black poets of Creole heritage, White poets of Creole heritage

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