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Discuss Kamala Das as a confessional poet.

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nafenehra | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 26, 2012 at 8:01 PM via web

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Discuss Kamala Das as a confessional poet.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 26, 2012 at 8:31 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that one can consider Kamala Das as a confessional poet.  She wrote for so much in terms of women's conditions and their own point of reference towards the world.  Yet, I think that this was fostered by her own experience, using writing as a way to make sense of her own life and being in the world.  In this, she fulfills several conditions of a confessional poet.  Her own words can assist in this analysis:

If I had been a loved person, I wouldn't have become a writer. I would have been a happy human being...I suppose I started writing because I had certain weaknesses in my system. I thought I was weak and vulnerable. That's why we attempt poetry. Poets are like snails without the shells, terribly vulnerable, so easy to crush. Of course it has given me a lot of pain, each poem. Each poem is really born out of pain, which I would like to share.

In this, Das presents herself as being able to use writing as a way to communicate her own confessional need.  The personal need that inspires her own work is to convey "certain weaknesses" and her own exploration of these are able to connect with both audience and her own sense of identity.  It is here where I think that Das can be seen as a confessional poet.  In doing so, one realizes why her work was so widely accepted and understood in that it spoke of an authenticity and transparency in construction that resonated with many.

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