On brand, Rupi Kaur – Anindita Ghose – LiveMint – 3/24/18
Rated as a “poet” whose concerns stand the test of time, like Bashō or Khayyam, she will fail. Rated as one who makes you shift perspective—à la W.H. Auden or Rainer Maria Rilke—she will fail. Rated as one you would quote to a friend on a happy Saturday morning—à la Frank O’Hara or Wendy Cope—she will fail.
The problem lies precisely in judging her through those constructs. Rupi Kaur is her own brand with her own narrative of success. If you rate those poets by the parameters that define Kaur, it is they who will fail.
Rupi Kaur’s bad poems shouldn’t worry us – the myopic view of the literary establishment should – Souradeep Roy – Scroll.in – 3/17/18
Instead, it would be better if we reimagine our discourse and see the real issue – the inability of the poetry establishment in the Anglophone world to open up their understanding of poetry from other cultures. This, again is not Watts’ problem alone, but a problem with the Anglophone world itself, where a certain naiveté about other cultures is passed off as a small faux pas. It is not just a coincidence that a French journalist asked Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie if there are bookshops in Nigeria. Caroline Broue, the journalist who asked the question, too, must not be lambasted in singular ways. Her question is symbolic of how the “First World” sees the second, third, fourth, and fifth worlds which, by the way, exist on the same planet. The poetry establishment, by which I mean Watts and her takers, and what she calls “the cohort of young female poets” and their supporters, actually share this ignorance.