Adrienne Rich Essay

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The Poetry of Adrienne Rich
     Adrienne Rich was born in Baltimore, Maryland in the year of 1929. Rich grew up in a household as she describes it as ” …white, middle-class, full of books, and with a father who encouraged her to write” (Daniel). Her father Arnold Rich was a doctor and a pathology professor and her mother, Helen Jones Rich , was a pianist and a composer. “Adrienne Rich recalls her growing-up years clearly dominated by the intellectual presence and demands of the male in the family, her father, while correctly marked by the submerged tensions arising from the conflicts between the religious and cultural heritage of the father's Jewish background and her mother's Southern Protestantism” (Pope). In
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Adrienne Rich can relate to her because they both are Jewish women that grew up in the forties. They were both victims of racism or felt racism in society, The poem refers to being forced to lose your identity, character, and ethnicity. Throughout her life Adrienne Rich has felt a loss of identity. Rich’s father practically abandons his heritage to fit into a racist society (Pope). This hatred from society and the loss of identity has influenced Rich to write such great works. She has become a fervent activist against racism.
     In 1951, when Rich first began writing poetry, she portrayed her writing after the prevailing male influential writers of the period. Later during the 1970s she began to change her way of writing and focused on feminism and lesbianism (American). At Radcliffe University, she studied solely male poets and she was taught entirely by male professors. These male poets and professors credited the origins of her style and their influence really showed in her early poetry. In 1953, Adrienne Rich married Alfred Conrad, a Harvard economist; in the next five years she gave birth to three sons. This was an emotionally and artistically difficult period for Adrienne Rich. Meagan Daniels explains that Rich felt it impossible for her to write without space (Daniel). She was struggling with conflicts over the given roles of womanhood versus those of artistry.
"I was writing
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