This article, published in Contemporary Literary Criticism (2014), is a biographical overview of the contemporary American poet, Sharon Olds, as well as a thematic overview of her poetry collections. I am named as the Volume Advisor. As Volume Advisor, I selected a dozen critical essays that had not been included in the CLC encyclopedia; wrote an annotated bibliography of these critical essays; and reviewed and edited the existing entry for critical and content accuracy.
Olds, a literary granddaughter of Walt Whitman, is celebrated as a poet of the body. Olds is one of my literary influences, and I had the pleasure of meeting her at the Dodge Poetry Festival in Newark, NJ. I also wrote my dissertation on the sublime in Olds’ poetry collections.
The Introduction of the article states: “Olds is an award-winning American poet known for works that trace provocative emotion in plain language and free-verse. In a career that has spanned more than three decades, her widely anthologized poems have been received by critics with praise and condemnation. Some have celebrated her fearless revelations of physicality, sexuality, and family life, while others have decried her work as monotonous, pornographic, and narcissistic.”