Bluets Summary & Study Guide

Maggie Nelson
This Study Guide consists of approximately 73 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Bluets.
This section contains 257 words
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Bluets Summary & Study Guide Description

Bluets Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Bluets by Maggie Nelson.

The following version of this book was used to create this study guide: Nelson, Maggie. Bluets. Seattle, Wave Books, 2009.

Bluets uses a nonlinear structure to explore the emotional and philosophical ramifications of grief. Over the course of the poem, the reader must piece together the events that have triggered Nelson to write the book. The most important is a painful breakup with the man to whom much of the book is addressed, in which he left the speaker for another woman. Over the years he continues to reach out and send the speaker blue gifts, but he refuses to acknowledge her pain or need for closure, for example by carrying one of her letters unopened.

Another major event is a car accident that leaves one of the speaker’s close friends a quadriparalytic. Over the year following the accident, the speaker helps to care for her friend and learns from her friend’s pain and innate wisdom how better to confront her own mental pain.

Over the three years of the poem’s writing, the speaker struggles to overcome her long-term depression through the central image of the color blue. She draws on influences from all areas of her life and interests, including conversations with friends, memories, science, encyclopedias, dictionaries, religious texts, philosophy, literature, music, history, politics, and the visual arts. Frequent quotations from writers, thinkers, and musicians provide new perspectives and lenses for the speaker’s reflections. Influences include Goethe, Wittgenstein, Thoreau, Emerson, Stein, Billie Holiday, Sir Isaac Newton, and many others.

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This section contains 257 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Bluets Study Guide
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