Adrienne Rich

(b. 1929)

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American poet, essayist, and critic, born in Baltimore, graduated from Radcliffe College, and has since held a variety of academic posts. Her characteristic fractured free verse, frequently in lengthy sequences, began to emerge in her third collection, Snapshot of a Daughter in Law (1956). Rich's subsequent volumes keep pace with her own increasing politicization and involvement with first the anti‐war movement and then lesbian/feminist politics, making them valuable representative documents of their times. Her poetry allies the personal ever more closely with the political, typically juxtaposing scenes of domestic life with reminders of horrifying instances of history. Among her collections are Diving into the Wreck (1973), The Dream of a Common Language (1978), The Fact of a Doorframe, Poems Selected and New: 1950–1984 (1984), and The School Among the Ruins: Poems 2000–2004 (2004). Rich's essays, particularly Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence (1981), have been seminal for her generation of feminists.

Subjects: Literature.

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