THE REFLECTION OF A NEW FEMALE IDENTITY IN EAVAN BOLAND'S POETRY
The aim of this study is to analyze Eavan Boland’s poetry in terms of shaping a new female identity in Irish poetry. Eavan Boland (1944-…) is a contemporary Irish poet whose works are regarded as canonical in Ireland. However, the number of Irish women poets is very few compared to male poets. Boland is aware of the fact that there are no predecessors for her to be inspired and her poetry can be seen as a reaction against a male dominated Irish poetic tradition in which women are treated or accepted as emblems, subjects or images. Especially, in Irish myths, women are depicted as voiceless figures who are waiting to be saved by males. In other words, women are used as emblems or symbols rather than as fully developed characters. When Eavan Boland realizes this patriarchal ideology which dominates Irish poetry and myths, she determines to create a completely new female identity. In her poetry collections, it is observed that there are fully independent women characters who are not chained or controlled by male gaze. In this study, I will examine how Eavan Boland reflects this new female self in her narratives by making certain references to her poems chosen from her selected poetry collections and at the end of this study, it will be discussed how Boland left a legacy to the contemporary Irish poetry tradition and to the future female poets.
Eavan Boland, Irish Poetry, Ireland, Women's Poetry, Irish Myths