Slam Poetry -Identity -Expression
Rachel Youngeun Rostad’s “Names”, was a live slam poetry performance in the Minneapolis area. Rachel is a young Korean American poet and her other performance on Button Poetry, “To JK Rowling, from Cho” was a controversial viral video grossing nearly half a million views. In “Names” Rachel talks about being adopted and using both her adopted name Youngeun and her American name Rachel. Her slam poetry is intense and passionate. She is also eloquent with her use of symbolism and metaphor while remaining impactful rather than heavy handed or contrived. She talks frankly of her experiences and how her middle name Youngeun was simply given to her by her foster home. She makes no move to hide her strong and conflicted feelings for that name and what is means to her. As another East Asian adopted child, I relate to her struggles and some of her feelings on being split between two cultures and identities. While not everyone can specifically relate to adoption, everyone can understand struggles of identity and acceptance.