A Companion to Australian Literature since 1900

November 2007
494 pages
9x6 in
Library eBook
Camden House
BISAC LIT004070, SOC062000, SOC054000

A Companion to Australian Literature since 1900

Edited by Nicholas Birns, Rebecca McNeer

A fresh, twenty-first-century look at Australian literature in a broad, inclusive, and multicultural sense.
Australian literature is one of the world's richest, dealing not only with "local" Australian themes and issues but with those at the forefront of global literary discussion. This book offers a fresh look at Australian literature, taking a broad view of what literature is and viewing it with Australian cultural and societal concerns in mind. Especially relevant is the heightened role of indigenous people and issues following the landmark 1992 Mabo decision on Aboriginal land rights. But attention to other multicultural connections and the competing pull of Australia's continued connection to Great Britain are also enlightening. Chapters are devoted to internationally prominent writers such as Patrick White, Peter Carey, David Malouf, and Christina Stead; fast-rising authors such as Gerald Murnane and Tim Winton; less-publicized writers such as Xavier Herbert and Dorothy Hewett; and on prose fiction, poetry, and drama, women's and gay and lesbian writing, children's literature, and science fiction. The Companion goes beyond Eurocentric ideas of national literary history to reveal the full, resplendent variety of Australian writing.

Contributors: Nicholas Birns, Rebecca McNeer, Ali Gumillya Baker, Gus Worby, Anita Heiss, Ruth Feingold, Wenche Ommundsen, Susan Jacobowitz, Deborah Madsen, Marguerite Nolan, Tanya Dalziell, Richard Carr, David McCooey, Maryrose Casey, Brigid Rooney, John Beston, John Scheckter, Werner Senn, Carolyn Bliss, Paul Genono, Lyn Jacobs, Nicole Moore, Ouyang Yu, Jaroslav Kusnir, Brigid Magner, Russel Blackford, Toni Johnson-Woods, Theodore F. Sheckels, Alice Mills, Gary Clark, Damien Barlow, Leigh Dale

Nicholas Birns teaches literature at the New School in New York City and is the editor of Antipodes. Rebecca McNeer is Associate Dean Emerita at Ohio University Southern.

An e-book version of this title is available (9781571136985), to libraries through a number of trusted suppliers. See here for a full list of our partners.

Table of Contents

Introduction - Rebecca McNeer and Nicholas Birns
Aboriginality since Mabo: Writing, Politics, and Art - Gus Worby and Ali Gummilya Baker
Writing Aboriginality: Authors on "Being Aboriginal" - Anita Heiss
From Empire to Nation: The Shifting Sands of Australian National Identity - Ruth Feingold
Multicultural Writing in Australia - Wenche Ommundsen
Jewish Writers in Australia - Susan Jacobowitz
Asian-Australian Literature - Deborah Madsen
The Demidenko Affair and Australian Hoaxes - Marguerite Nolan
Australian Women's Writing from 1970 to 2005 - Tanya Dalziell
Writing the Nation, 1900-1940 - Richard Carr
Australian Poetry from Kenneth Slessor to Jennifer Strauss - Nicholas Birns
Australian Poetry, 1970-2005 - David McCooey
Australian Drama, 1900-1970 - Maryrose Casey
Australian Drama since 1970 - Maryrose Casey
Christina Stead - Brigid Rooney
Patrick White - John Beston
David Malouf - John Scheckter
Les Murray - Werner Senn
Peter Carey - Carolyn Bliss
Gerald Murnane - Paul Genoni
Tim Winton and Western Australian Writing - Lyn Jacobs
Dorothy Hewett - Nicole Moore
Xavier Herbert - Ouyang Yu
Michael Wilding, Murray Bail, Rodney Hall, and Frank Moorhouse - Jaroslav Kusnir
Trans-Tasman Literary Expatriates - Brigid Magner
Australian Science Fiction - Russell Blackford
Popular Australian Writing - Toni Johnson-Woods
Australian Film - Theodore Sheckels
Australian Children's Literature - Alice Mills
Environmental Themes in Australian Literature - Gary Clark
Australian Gay and Lesbian Writing - Damien Barlow and Leigh Dale
Notes on the Contributors


Winner, CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title Award, 2008

How to do justice to this gem? Any brief treatment of this comprehensive, richly varied companion threatens to lapse into a shopping list of its astonishing range of subjects. ... Essential. CHOICE

[...] The felt need for literary history as a complex kind of social history and thermometer of present times remains strong. [...] Newest of the histories is the estimable A Companion to Australian Literature Since 1900.... [which] will be used in libraries with profit and enjoyment....AUSTRALIAN BOOK REVIEW
BR> This is a fine book, beautifully edited, readable and full of interest. Scholarly and lively, this Companion should be widely used. JOURNAL OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR THE STUDY OF AUSTRALIAN LITERATURE

[An] outstanding, reader-friendly volume.... [Follows a] tradition of instilling in international readers the love of Australian literature and the determination to keep up to date with the latest trends in literary criticism. OVERLAND

Birns and McNeer have done an excellent job in compiling a volume that combines the necessary survey work with politically and theoretically informed readings of key texts and movements. AUSTRALIAN LIBRARY STUDIES

[L]ikely to prove very useful for undergraduate students and perhaps even general readers. YEAR'S WORK IN ENGLISH STUDIES

This rich presentation of Australian Aboriginal Literature offers a kind of accomplished comprehensive approach for connoisseurs and newcomers alike. . . . [A] huge achievement. THE GOOSE