The Other World of Richard Wright: Perspectives on His Haiku reveals Richard Wright's poetic vision toward the human world. Through the minimal form of haiku, Wright (1908-1960) found his poetic connection to nature. This sensibility displays not only the change in him as a writer but also the tenderness in him as a human being.
These essays open up a new territory in Wright studies by tracing the development of Wright's aesthetic and its relationship to African and Japanese cultures. The book tells how haiku offered a therapeutic outlet for Wright in his final two years of life in Paris, explores the influence of Zen Buddhism on Wright's haiku, and delivers a thematic analysis of Wright's haiku. The collection also gives us a focused examination of how Wright's haiku reveal a conflict between nature and culture, how women are exploited for labor and sex by the culture at-large, and how the South in Wright's haiku symbolizes a place full of dreams, memories, hardships, and loneliness with his images of cotton, freight trains, croaking frogs, magnolia trees, and hog-killing.