Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Entitled "Daphne Marlatt's Salmon Texts {dollar}\to{dollar} Swimming/Jumping the Margins/Barriers," my dissertation, the first full-length study of Marlatt's life/text, examines her works, up to and including How Hug a Stone, through the lens of her present feminist poetics. The first of three sections, "Translation and Transgression {dollar}\to{dollar} A Writing Woman Writing 'Woman'," situates Daphne Marlatt's life-writing in the doubled context of a masculinist postmodern tradition, in which she has links with poets affiliated with Black Mountain College, and an emerging feminist countertradition, in which she has affinities with such precursors as Gertrude Stein, and with such contemporaries as Nicole Brossard. My first chapter seeks to account for those elements within the West Coast strain of Canadian literary postmodernism that Marlatt was apprenticed to during the sixties and seventies which are conducive to a feminist writing practice. My second chapter extends this exploration to examine Marlatt's explicitly feminist poetics, developed during the eighties in collaboration with the feminist poetics and theory of others, a multi-dialogue that points toward what defines a feminist writing practice. Chapters one and two culminate with an exploration of the long poem and autobiography, respectively, because these two genres, especially as they intersect in the life/long poem, are central to Marlatt's work.;In Section II, "Breaking the Frames {dollar}\to{dollar} Towards a Woman's Long Poem," I explore Marlatt's celebrated long poem of place, Steveston, and reframe it within a network of related projects that culminate in Marlatt's re-vision of uncollected poems from the Steveston period, forthcoming in a work entitled "Salvage." My second chapter in Section II looks at those texts that spiral around Steveston--specifically Frames, Rings, Vancouver Poems and The Story, She Said--to reveal further how Marlatt breaks the related frames of genre and gender in other poetic sequences. Section III, "Writing Her Self {dollar}\to{dollar} Exploring the Life/Text Margins," examines Marlatt's travel trilogy--Zocalo, Month of Hungry Ghosts, and How Hug a Stone--as autobiographical elegy that writes (m)otherwise, towards her absent mother, as well as towards woman as other, the repressed feminine on the margins of culture.



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