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Date Permissions Signed


Date of Award

Spring 2017

Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor

Miller, Brenda, 1959-

Second Advisor

Beasley, Bruce, 1958-

Third Advisor

Mahoney, Kristin Mary


Permission is a collection of prose poems, letters, vignettes, and a video essay that cohere into a hybrid poetry memoir. Alone, each piece is a small autonomous unit. But when taken together, the pieces accrue into something far larger—a quilted memoir that amplifies the meaning of each of its component parts. The form and arrangement are meant to mimic the content; viz. each piece is rendered as true to memory, and as memories are: nonlinear, sporadic, and perhaps incomplete. Further, in an effort toward wholeness, Permission interacts with the distinction between emotional and experiential memory. The emotional memory pieces (in the text demarcated by italics) are often more dense, incongruous, metaphor-laden, and ambiguous than the experiential memory pieces. They are meant to evoke the emotional narrative that underlies the more obvious experiential narrative. The topics covered include: domestic abuse, sexual trauma, isolation, sexuality, the psychology of recovery, and the eventual development of a post-trauma adult identity. As a body of work, Permission resists the silencing of victims of domestic violence, thereby contributing a verse to the broader conversation surrounding women’s rights and rape culture.





Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Memory; Identity (Psychology)--Poetry; Adult child abuse victims--Poetry; Victims of family violence--Poetry




masters theses




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