Magazine article World Literature Today

One Hundred Hungers

Magazine article World Literature Today

One Hundred Hungers

Article excerpt

Verse

Lauren Camp. One Hundred Hungers. North Adams, Massachusetts. Tupelo Press. 2016. 91 pages.

One Hundred Hungers is a book of exile, faith, and acceptance. Of flavor, desire, and violation. Poet Lauren Camp confides in us what feels like a timeless narrative, and her creative explication of an American immigrant story feels entirely new. In addition to exposing the experience of the cultural and religious Other, Camp also unveils several issues that are specifically female. As the daughter of a Jewish Iraqi immigrant, Camp invites her reader to experience the oddity of diaspora within diaspora through evocative imagery and diction; a variety of portraits of differing people, places, and experiences; and direct interrogation of political (and personal) drama.

Without falling into any clichés or the chronological reenacting of events in her family history, she unveils her Jewish-Iraqi heritage through a linguistic dance-as if her language were long scarves of brightcolored silks twisting around the arms and hips of an intoxicating woman. Camp does this in five parts, each pulling a thread from a different angle of the experience of fleeing one's homeland and settling anew. …

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