UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Translating light : Brazil and sensuality in works of P. K. Page Jung, Desirée


This dissertation gives a reading of the Canadian poet P. K. Page. What especially interests me is how Page engages with being in the world through language. I inquire into how she articulates the body and its qualities in words; her different relationships with the embodied life and her reflections on sensuality. From selected literary works, I argue that she approaches lived experience primarily through visualization, an approach which creates a sense that something is missing, due to the transformation of sensuality into visual representations. My argument is that the writer, despite her successful strategy of translating the world into images of light and colour, also searches for the additional participation of her other senses. I explore her difficulty in finding ways to express other senses than the visual, her struggle to relate embodied sensations to one’s ownership of a physical body. To support my argument I focus on Page’s books Brazilian Journal and Hologram: A Book of Glosas. My aim is to retrace examples of visual sensuality as key elements that allow one to understand her quest for the world of the senses and the physical body, while fleshing out the natural elements of particular environments in contexts that are both human and non-human, urban and natural. My intention is to demonstrate how the writing of physical bodies and their sensorial qualities in Page’s work is urgent and vigorous, beginning from Brazilian Journal, where she constantly battles with her own defences against her desire to feel the world and translate its light. Her struggles continued into Hologram, where the visual poetics take over all other possibilities of exploring sensuality. My point is to show that the representations of physicality demand a corporeality and vigour that P. K. Page consistently sought in her work.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


Attribution 3.0 Unported