Admit One: An American Scrapbook
An unflinching look at the underpinnings of racism in the U.S., via key figures who used science to defend sterilization, exploitation, discrimination, segregation, and dehumanization of nonwhites, whites not deemed white enough, and anyone 'less' than those with 'superior' genes. With the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair as a framework, Collins attempts to understand her family's experience of and participation in those times. Her poems are lists, definitions, newspaper pages, historical time lines, and biographical facts. These diverse poetic forms highlight the beauty of diversity itself. But Collins never lets up on the driving themes of unethical treatment and collective culpability. In fact, 'Postscript Three' punctuates this powerful collection with the vitriol still spewed and sensationalized, keeping racism depressingly alive in a supposedly advanced century.