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Harvard Authors Spotlight: Nadia Colburn on Poetic Process and Inter-Being

Nadia Colburn '95 recently sat down with The Harvard Crimson to discuss her holistic approach to . It is easy to confine writing to a highly formalized art form, entered through academia, confined to a particular realm of education. Nadia Colburn '95, a poet, teacher, and writing coach currently based in Cambridge, argues for a more holistic approach to writing, however, one more fully realized within the human experience, and accessible to all. “I really think that we are beings,” Colburn said in a recent interview with The Harvard Crimson. “And that, like birds, we sing. I think that it's just a natural human capacity to use language to communicate and to make something beautiful.” Colburn discovered her love for poetry early on in her education at the College. “I took a Whitman seminar with Helen Vendler when I was an undergraduate,” she said. “That course totally shifted me to thinking ‘Okay, I'm going to focus on poetry as an undergraduate on my thesis,' and then I fell in love with the work of W.H. Auden and I wrote my undergraduate thesis and my dissertation on Auden.” After graduate school, Colburn began to explore writing the confines of academia alone. “I felt like the container of the ways in which literary academia looked at literature felt a little bit limited,” she said. “I wanted to get outside the box a little bit more.” This choice prompted Colburn to begin to focus more on her own creative writing, […]

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