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The Devil and the Deep Blue: Exploring Identity through Poetry

Description

Poetry is a way of living for me both as a writer and as a survivor of child sexual (CSA) and physical abuse. I have been turning to poetry for as long as I can remember as a companion on

Poetry is a way of living for me both as a writer and as a survivor of child sexual (CSA) and physical abuse. I have been turning to poetry for as long as I can remember as a companion on my journey through my trauma, trying to figure out who exactly it is. In Devil and the Deep Blue: Exploring Identity through Poetry, I take my trauma from my past and dissect it. I have taken old poems and edited them along with the guidance of Dr. Dombrowski and Dr. McNeil as my director and second reader respectively and edited them down into a collection of micro-poems. My goal in making these poems is to both put my own trauma to rest in a way, but to also make something for other trauma survivors who may not know they are not alone. My poems are one perspective on trauma, as I can only write what I have felt, but they are meant to show that there is someone who has felt that pain, as well as trying to make myself a better person through my own writing. Along with the micro poems, there are covers that I designed using childhood photos of my father and I, of which there are only a few remaining photographs, as well as designs I drew alongside those photos. The 3rd cover is an amalgam of childhood photos of my parents as well as photos of our family today, intending to show the change in message in the poems as they progress through the collection; they begin in introspection, move into the exploration of the more piercing pieces of trauma that I had yet to even uncover until now, and then the third group of poems is focused on the calmer pieces of aftermath that I still experience and how I am trying to withstand all of that.

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Date Created
2019-05

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Creative Process of Poetry Collection: “korean mourning rituals”

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My journey with “korean mourning rituals” began in search of understanding myself. Like many others, I use poetry as an emotional outlet, and as a way of understanding why I feel the way I do. Sometimes, even being able to

My journey with “korean mourning rituals” began in search of understanding myself. Like many others, I use poetry as an emotional outlet, and as a way of understanding why I feel the way I do. Sometimes, even being able to put a name to what I feel. “korean mourning rituals” is a poetry collection comprised of 30 poems, created over the span of two years. “korean mourning rituals” is an accumulation of poems about intergenerational trauma, romantic relationships, family matters, and navigating the colonial settler state as a Korean american womxn. In this paper, I will be dissecting one poem selected for “korean mourning rituals,” and its editing process. Additionally, I will be discussing what I have planned for distribution of “korean mourning rituals,” as well as the self-publishing process and the different avenues I sought out.

One of the poems in my collection, “and the paperwork asks for my family’s history of mental health,” I dissect the intergenerational trauma of my Korean American family as a way to understand the guilt, sorrow, and difficulties buried within me. Intergenerational trauma is trauma transferred through the generations, even if those beyond the first-generation did not directly experience the traumatic incidents (Bombay, Matheson, Anisman, 2). This intergenerational trauma, when specifically tied to Koreans, is called, “han.” “Han” is described as a cultural phenomenon, that scholars often have trouble defining. Theologian Suh Nam-dong describes han as, “a feeling of unresolved resentment against injustices suffered, a sense of helplessness because of the overwhelming odds against one, a feeling of acute pain in one's guts and bowels, making the whole body writhe and squirm, and an obstinate urge to take revenge and to right the wrong—all these combined,” (Yoo, 221). Han, when applied to the Korean diaspora, is referred to as “postmemory han,” which refers to the feelings of han experienced by second-generation Korean Americans. “Postmemory han” is the idea that even if these second-generation Korean Americans did not directly experience the trauma the first-generation Koreans did, they still feel residual han, regardless of whether they actively pursue “remembering” their family’s trauma (Chu, 98-105). This “nonconsensual remembering,” is a concept I have, and continue to, explore throughout my written work, and is the nucleus of “korean mourning rituals.”

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Date Created
2019-05

Applications of Deep Neural Networks to Neurocognitive Poetics: A Quantitative Study of the Project Gutenberg English Poetry Corpus

Description

With the advent of sophisticated computer technology, we increasingly see the use of computational techniques in the study of problems from a variety of disciplines, including the humanities. In a field such as poetry, where classic works are subject to

With the advent of sophisticated computer technology, we increasingly see the use of computational techniques in the study of problems from a variety of disciplines, including the humanities. In a field such as poetry, where classic works are subject to frequent re-analysis over the course of years, decades, or even centuries, there is a certain demand for fresh approaches to familiar tasks, and such breaks from convention may even be necessary for the advancement of the field. Existing quantitative studies of poetry have employed computational techniques in their analyses, however, there remains work to be done with regards to the deployment of deep neural networks on large corpora of poetry to classify portions of the works contained therein based on certain features. While applications of neural networks to social media sites, consumer reviews, and other web-originated data are common within computational linguistics and natural language processing, comparatively little work has been done on the computational analysis of poetry using the same techniques. In this work, I begin to lay out the first steps for the study of poetry using neural networks. Using a convolutional neural network to classify author birth date, I was able to not only extract a non-trivial signal from the data, but also identify the presence of clustering within by-author model accuracy. While definitive conclusions about the cause of this clustering were not reached, investigation of this clustering reveals immense heterogeneity in the traits of accurately classified authors. Further study may unpack this clustering and reveal key insights about how temporal information is encoded in poetry. The study of poetry using neural networks remains very open but exhibits potential to be an interesting and deep area of work.

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Date Created
2019-05

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Observer #9

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The culture surrounding death in America is one of science and silence. When possible, death is hidden away from the public view. When exposure to death is unavoidable, it is sensationalized, made into a spectacle. Our dying are put into

The culture surrounding death in America is one of science and silence. When possible, death is hidden away from the public view. When exposure to death is unavoidable, it is sensationalized, made into a spectacle. Our dying are put into hospice care, nursing homes, and other hidden spaces, or else they are plastered over the news and internet. So, we get one of two views of death: the sterile, silent death that happens in the presence of medical professionals or the bloody, tragic deaths that are constantly reported across news outlets and social media or sensationalized on entertainment platforms such as movies and video games. Entire genres of television and movies are created on the foundation of bloody deaths and we are exposed to the concept of death constantly.

Despite the consistent coverage of death on a large scale, the average person is not often exposed to death on a personal level in this day and age. The deaths we see on television or in the movies are not typically connected to people with whom we are attached and so we are not required to work through our emotional response and experience. We are afforded the space to be a casual observer in most of the deaths that we see—we do not need the emotional and mental tools to cope with death on a personal level. While this distance from death may be true of the American whole, it is not entirely generalizable. Professionals in select fields are required to deal with death on a much more regular basis than the average person, including, but not limited to, healthcare and forensic professionals. In these professions, death is a fundamental aspect of the job—either as an expected risk or a necessary precursor. These professionals deal intimately with death, its causes, and its effects on a regular basis because of their chose line of work and, in doing so, are regularly exposed to death and other trauma which has the potential to affect them on both a professional and personal level. In doing so, these professionals are required to, as scientists, analyze and record these experiences with death through the lens of objectivity. These professionals are expected to maintain a professional distance while also being required to give an empathetic response to other’s trauma. The potential effect of this secondary trauma on these professionals is only sharpened by the culture of machismo in these science-based fields that prevents many professionals from expressing emotions regarding their job and getting the social support they need from others within their community.

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Date Created
2018-12

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How to Create a Narrative Poetry Collection: Feminism and Reflection

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Through my research I had considered how feminism and reflection can be used in narrative poetry. In addition to research on narrative poetry, I had self-published a narrative poetry collection titled 100. which I self-published on Amazon through kindle and

Through my research I had considered how feminism and reflection can be used in narrative poetry. In addition to research on narrative poetry, I had self-published a narrative poetry collection titled 100. which I self-published on Amazon through kindle and a hard copy. The study of feminist poetry is looked at in my research in order to further apply feminism and reflection to narrative poetry. The joys of feminism, culture, identity, and empowerment are discussed and explained throughout my poetry collection. There are three waves of feminism, and I focused on writing in the third wave feminism which doesn’t have a cohesive argument, but focuses on sharing stories that are unique to women. As well, third wave feminism discourages patriarchy and encourages socio-political action. Some common, and re-occurring themes include my transformation process during college, spirituality (my faith), and nature. In order to further my poetry collection I had looked at many feminist authors on culture, and narrative poetry collections in order to see how the creative process works, and how I could better benefit my narrative poetry through feminism and reflection on growing up and what it means to be a woman. I had encountered and tried to reflect highly on the unique stories I have encountered being a woman raised of a Catholic identity in Ohio. This collection of poetry is meant as a reflection on my college experience as a female, and sharing the empowerment I have as a woman that I hope to share with others.

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Date Created
2019-05

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Waltz,

Description

Waltz, is a collection of poems written to play along the boundaries between sound, language, and meaning. As a vehicle for exploration, the poems in Waltz, commandeer themes of nostalgia, love, loss, and abstraction, all of which build up and

Waltz, is a collection of poems written to play along the boundaries between sound, language, and meaning. As a vehicle for exploration, the poems in Waltz, commandeer themes of nostalgia, love, loss, and abstraction, all of which build up and break each other down to create something of a nonlinear narrative, and concomitant sketch of the poet.

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Date Created
2018-05

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Relay for Life: More Than Just a Fundraiser

Description

Cancer is a disease that has no bias based on race, gender, sexuality, socioeconomic status, or religious beliefs. Millions upon millions of people are affected every day by this disease in many different ways. In order to show support and

Cancer is a disease that has no bias based on race, gender, sexuality, socioeconomic status, or religious beliefs. Millions upon millions of people are affected every day by this disease in many different ways. In order to show support and raise funds for these people to help with treatment costs, housing, and much more American Cancer Society created and event called Relay for Life. Relay for Life is an event that many people may describe as a walk-a-thon fundraiser, but to those who have had a personal experience with cancer they understand that Relay is much more. Relay for Life is more than a fundraiser; it is an event that brings hope, love, and care into a community. Many people across the country show up to a Relay event to hear the success stories of those who are in remission, show support for their family and friends who are still fighting, and simply volunteer in order to further remember those that they lost to cancer.
The impacts that Relay for Life supplies go beyond monetary value and branch into the world of emotional and mental value. The stories that you hear from cancer patients, caregivers, survivors, friends, and family all show the appreciation for this event even in the smallest of communities. Looking at the Relay for Life website you can see the thousands of submissions detailing exactly why that individual participates in this event. You can read stories of sorrow, drive, friendships that have formed, and hope that has sprouted because of Relay for Life. An event such as this that celebrates the fight and works to give the world more birthdays truly empowers its participants to make a difference and make a connection with each other.
In this project, I set out to reveal the importance of Relay for Life that can be seen and heard through everyone who participates across the nation. It is important to take both personal experience and monetary value into account when looking at how Relay has had a positive impact on the lives of those affected by cancer, but when looking at the broad picture it becomes obvious how this event means more than money.

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Date Created
2019-05

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PURE, Poems and Prose by: Grant Wallace

Description

In September of 1540 Garcia Lopez de Cardenas, while being led by Hopi Natives, came across something no European had ever seen before. One can only imagine what must have gone through his mind as he discovered the world’s largest

In September of 1540 Garcia Lopez de Cardenas, while being led by Hopi Natives, came across something no European had ever seen before. One can only imagine what must have gone through his mind as he discovered the world’s largest canyon, 18 miles across and close to 6,000 feet deep. Over the course of three days, Garcia and his scouts made attempts to enter into the canyon and to taste of its river, but, after many failed attempts, they had to make their way back to their main camp for fear of dehydration and it was left unvisited by any Europeans for over 200 years.

Now I wasn’t the first one to discover the canyon, but I remember a time when I was in the fourth grade. When I stepped out of a bus that I had been in for close to four hours and took forty footsteps to end up at a small brick wall that came close to calf-height which was meant to keep me safe. I don’t know why it didn’t hit me until this point, because I had seen pictures of its grandeur and “experienced” the so called “majesty” of the Grand Canyon through the medium of the National Geographic and tasted of the beauty of one of the natural wonders of the world through the photographs of others before, but standing face to face with a five-thousand-foot cliff humbled me and brought a fear in to me that I can’t describe. Especially when a friend of mine had violently jerked me while I was close to the edge. I remember hearing fear in my father’s voice as I got a little too close to the edge for his comfort. He wanted me to be safe, but I wanted to look this canyon in the eye.
I find it really interesting though, that both my father and I feared ME getting close to the edge. I guess it’s because we both didn’t fully trust my young and feeble knees to keep me stable while I was that close to a fall that would’ve meant sure death for me. Or maybe it was because a couple of months before this, he had seen on the news that some kid was playing too close to the edge and had fallen to his death. Or maybe, it was because, for the first time, death was actually close enough to grasp something he profoundly loved. Either way, I won’t ever forget the loving strain in his voice as he sternly said “Grant! Step a little bit further back from the edge Son.”

It’s really a shame that no one knew. Or at least that no one said anything if they did know. Especially because this New canyon I stood looking face to face with was thousands of feet deeper than the one I had been close to the edge of ten years before, and had the authority to not just kill me once, but twice, if I fell.

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Date Created
2020-05

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Filling a Body That's Yours: a Consideration of Identity, Queerness, and Mental Illness

Description

"Filling a Body That's Yours" is a collection of poetry that celebrates queer survival and the fluidity and mutability of identity. The poems arise from personal experience and expand to the universal in order to question and critique constructs of

"Filling a Body That's Yours" is a collection of poetry that celebrates queer survival and the fluidity and mutability of identity. The poems arise from personal experience and expand to the universal in order to question and critique constructs of mental illness, queerness, transness, and identity. Via intuitive imagistic shifts, unexpected language, and urgent vulnerability, the poems share a personal account of mental illness and treatment, and set out to critique the mental health industrial complex and shortcomings in language, psychiatry, and psychology. For this project, the collection of poems is coupled with a written analytical component that discusses the personal and theoretical backgrounds for the work, as well as poetics and influences. The essay specifically addresses three main themes that appear in the poems: queerness/gender, mental illness and treatment, and identity, using theorists such as Judith Butler and David Hume. Further, the essay provides personal background for the work and discusses poetic influences such as Sylvia Plath, Li-Young Lee, Claudia Rankine, and Norman Dubie. Both the poems and the essay, while addressing these themes, attempt to ask and examine questions such as: "Is my gender entirely mine? Was it thrust wholly or in part upon me? Do I choose to claim queerness, or is it innate?" In asking these questions, the poems challenge readers to consider how they came to understand their bodies as gendered, and what political ends their identities may serve. Ultimately, the poems and their theoretical counterparts complicate constructs we commonly accept as essential givens, and meditate upon timeless existential questions in new, visceral ways.

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Date Created
2017-05

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Flashback: YA Poetry

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The following collection of YA prose poems have been designed to inspire and promote literacy among adolescents via its layers of depth and context while offering a productive and positive outlet for maturing emotions. By harnessing these emotional and psychological

The following collection of YA prose poems have been designed to inspire and promote literacy among adolescents via its layers of depth and context while offering a productive and positive outlet for maturing emotions. By harnessing these emotional and psychological forces, we can inspire adolescents to use reading and writing to find meaning in their lives. These poems provide young adults with themes that reflect the growing pains and types of coming-of-age experiences that they can relate to and that helps them to make sense of their world. As educators, we want our students to fall in love with reading and writing. We must recognize that literacy is another significant developmental need of young adults and that YA poetry helps to bridge the gap between children's stories and adult classics thereby allowing for a smoother transition. This collection of poetry means to challenge our students to self-reflect and develop their own unique connections with the text. Adolescents need to be made to laugh and cry about issues concerning them, issues treated seriously and respectfully. Teenagers are on a journey of self-discovery and they are still trying to figure out who they are. Their need for peer acceptance must be balanced by their need for individuality. The following collection of poems makes use of a YA voice that transcends time and addresses issues concerning young adults of any multicultural generation.

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Date Created
2018-05