IN PERSON: Are you a poet or a lover of literature? In this discussion-based course, we will turn our attention to poems that focus on historical topics. Known as documentary poetry, like documentary film and creative nonfiction, poems in this genre capture a time and place in history. We will primarily read work by this diverse set of award-winning poets: Elizabeth Bradfield, Rita Dove, Diane Gilliam Fisher, Patricia Smith and Natasha Trethewey. Subjects for these documentary poems follow the history of polar exploration, familial relationships, the West Virginia coal mining wars, Hurricane Katrina and the red-light district of New Orleans in the early 1900s. We will consider the unique ways that poets broach subject matter, as well as the distinctions between documentary poetry and poetry of witness. Discussions will address topics, themes, craft and the social value/relevance of the genre. | Facilitated discussion.
Max enrollment: 12.
Location: Judea Reform Congregation, 1933 W. Cornwallis Rd, Durham NC 27705
Lavonne J. Adams has an M.A. in English and an MFA in creative writing. Her publications include a documentary poetry collection and chapbook, and more than 40 individual publications in national venues in the documentary genre. She was granted residencies at the Vermont Studio Center, the Harwood Museum of Art and The Helene Wurlitzer Foundation. Adams, an award-winning educator, taught at the university level for more than 20 years. This will be her second OLLI teaching adventure.