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Natasha Trethewey’s poetry of family and historic violence and personal racial hybridity is the subject of Timothy Leyrson’s “Writing Between Worlds”.
Trethewey’s views of her bi-racial identity, and race relations overall, are beneficial for a number of reasons. By embracing these concepts she is able to create deeper meaning in her own expression, for her readers who are bi-racial she develops a common bond, and readers of a singular racial background are forced to examine the world beyond their own perception. But perhaps the highest level of understanding is that her views may be acting as a method of transformation. The idea of being united in one’s own mind, as well as to others, it is explained by Trethewey herself in a lecture she delivered in Emory University’s Distinguished Faculty Lecture series on February 3, 2010. Trethewey stated: I believe, after all, that poetry is the best repository for our most humane, ethical, and just expressions of feeling. This is because poetry ennobles the human soul, that it opens—not closes—our hearts. Poetry matters...
For the full essay and all of the others, get the anthology here.