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Spitting Image

"Kara van de Graaf's debut collection heralds the arrival of an essential new voice in contemporary poetry. Through poems that balance personal recollection with ekphrasis, science, and meditation, Van de Graaf searches for answers in the fluctuating relationship between the body and the self.

"Taking as its primary theme the exploration of the female body in current culture, Spitting Image considers the myriad intersections of the body and gender, desire, relationships, and otherness."


"Van de Graaf interrogates underrepresented elements of the female experience, especially the physical, rhetorical, and aesthetic limitations of fatness in poetry and other arts.

"She then complicates those limitations through her use of innovative forms and imaginative verse, implicitly calling for poetry to engage with the female form in fresh ways.

"Throughout, Van de Graaf's poems ask: In a time where we have more agency to define ourselves than ever before, what barriers still remain? What do our bodies mean to who we are?"


Van de Graaf reads the original version of the title poem and discusses the revision process.


"Kara van de Graaf is a poet, teacher, and editor living in Salt Lake City, Utah. She holds a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she was a Chancellor's Fellow and a Distinguished Dissertation Fellow, an MFA in Writing from University of Pittsburgh, where she was a K. Leroy Irvis Fellow, and a BA in English from Purdue University. Currently, she serves as Assistant Professor of English at Utah Valley University."


Comments welcome.


Posted on May 1, 2018

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