Rupi Kaur reinvents poetry for the social media generation

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RUPI KAUR made her name on Instagram by attacking Instagram, a fitting ascent for the provocative 24-year-old poet who releases her short verses onto the slippery, reactive sphere of social media. In 2015, she uploaded a picture of herself lying in bed on sheets stained with menstrual blood. The post was removed, and she promptly hit back. “I will not apologise for feeding the ego and pride of misogynist society that will have my body in underwear but will not be okay with a small leak,” she wrote on Facebook and Tumblr. Vitriol and death threats came in droves, but so did followers. Today’s count is 1.7m

Ms Kaur’s success is singular, but it is also a reflection of the times. Poetry is in the midst of a renaissance, and is being driven by a clutch of young, digitally-savvy “Instapoets”, so-called for their ability to package their work into concise, shareable posts. Taylor Knott Gregson, a best-selling poet, boasts nearly 600,000 followers on Instagram, where…Continue reading

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