Poetic lives: The English experience in Asia

Agnes S.L. LAM, Yin Nga Kelly TSE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


As English becomes more widely used around the world, it has also been increasingly adopted as a language for literary expression by writers who learnt it as an additional language. This is particularly so in post-colonial settings. Just as varieties of English have developed in different parts of the world, literatures in English with regional colour have also emerged. Yet, little is known about how learners of English become published writers in English. Understanding this phenomenon is important as it has implications for the cultivation of literature or literatures, the design of creative writing programmes and, more generally, the teaching of English. As poetry is one of the earliest types of writing to appear in such contexts, it seems useful to address this question by studying the development of poets. This essay offers a model of how poets develop and connects individual growth with the engendering of literary communities. The model is illustrated with the experience of five poets, one each from these locations: Macao, Hong Kong, Singapore, the Philippines and India. It is part of a larger study of 50 poets, ten from each of the five locations. Copyright © 2013 Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-142
JournalNew Writing
Issue number2
Early online date02 Oct 2012
Publication statusPublished - 2013


Lam, A. S. L., & Tse, K. Y. N. (2013). Poetic lives: The English experience in Asia. New Writing, 10(2), 128-142. doi: 10.1080/14790726.2012.725742


  • Development
  • Poets
  • Creative writing
  • English
  • Asia


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