y The Riders single work   novel  
Issue Details: First known date: 1994 1994
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

Fred Scully is in another country, a 'desert Irishman' far from home. After two long years of travelling through Europe, he decided to move his family from Australia to western Ireland. Scully arrived weeks ahead of his family to renovate the old farmhouse they'd bought in the shadow of a castle in County Offally, and which he's renovated by hand. Now, at the gate of Shannon's international airport, he anxiously awaits the arrival of his pregnant wife and seven-year-old daughter, envisioning a new life ahead, a fresh start. He has waited for and worried about this for months. He is a man who does not like being alone. The plane lands, the glass doors to the terminal slide open and his daughter emerges. Alone. There is no note, no word of explanation from his wife, only the mute silence of his stunned child. In an instant, Scully's life goes down in flames. This is a story of a marriage in our time. So begins a love-crazed odyssey across Europe, to the underside of the male psyche, in search of a woman vanished.

(Adapted from Trove)

Notes

  • Selected in December 2004 by the Australian public in an ABC poll as Australia's 69th favourite book.
  • Dedication: For Denise
  • Epigraph: Lines from 'Tom Traubert's Blues' by Tom Waits.
  • Other formats: Also sound recording.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • New York (City), New York (State),
      c
      United States of America (USA),
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Scribner , 1995 .
      Extent: 377p.
      ISBN: 0684802961
    • London,
      c
      England,
      c
      c
      United Kingdom (UK),
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Picador , 1995 .
      Extent: 377p.
      ISBN: 0330339419
    • London,
      c
      England,
      c
      c
      United Kingdom (UK),
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Picador , 1995 .
      Extent: 348p.
      ISBN: 0330339427
    • Sydney, New South Wales,: Picador , 1996 .
      Extent: 377p.
      ISBN: 0330357395 (pbk.)
    • London,
      c
      England,
      c
      c
      United Kingdom (UK),
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Picador , 1996 .
      Extent: 377p.
      ISBN: 0330339427 (pbk)
    • Tullamarine, Keilor - Sunshine area, Melbourne - West, Melbourne, Victoria,: Bolinda , 1996 .
      Extent: 345p.
      ISBN: 1863406417
    • Sydney, New South Wales,: Picador , 2004 .
      Extent: 377p.
      ISBN: 0330357395
Language: German

Works about this Work

Hydra Healing Sarah Hender , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Advertiser , 25 July 2015; (p. 39)
‘Over the Cliff and into the Water’ : Love, Death and Confession in Tim Winton’s Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2014 single work criticism
— Appears in: Tim Winton : Critical Essays 2014; (p. 96-121)

'Tim Winton's female characters show a strong tendency towards self-threatening behaviors, transience and ferocity. This is evident in the violent deaths of Jewel in An Open Swimmer, Maureen in Shallows, Ida's murder in In the Winter Dark [...], Tegwyn's self-harm in That Eye, the Sky, Dolly's alcoholism in Cloudstreet, Eva Sanderson's Hutchence-lookalike death in Breath and, obviously, the ephemerality of mothers in Dirt Music...' (96)

'The World's Australian Anthem' : Matilda Waltzes On Angela Jones , 2013 single work criticism
— Appears in: Telling Stories : Australian Life and Literature 1935–2012 2013; (p. 477-483)
'Mother, Where Art Thou? Absence and Motherhood in Tim Winton’s Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Zeitschrift fur Anglistik und Amerikanistik , vol. 60 no. 2 2012; (p. 141-154)
Abstract: Absent mothers are striking features in Tim Winton's novels, whether induced by death, circumstance or their own will. Motherhood is inextricably linked with trauma and suffering, either on the side of the mothers themselves, their husbands or their children. In this paper I will explain how absence and motherhood together function as metaphors for traumatic displacement and contribute to a redefinition of cultural, national and individual boundaries, while also illuminating problematic gender relations in Australia and their cultural representations. The focus is on a close-text analysis of The Riders (1994) while Winton's other novels will be used to contextualise and strengthen the points made in this paper.' (Author's abstract)
Gendered Spaces : The Poetics of Domesticity in Tim Winton’s Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of the European Association of Studies on Australia, , vol. 3 no. 2 2012; (p. 59-79)
'How can the fictional representation of space and domestic interority be interpreted in fictional works like Dirt Music, The Riders or Winton's latest novel Breath? This article argues that the house as an active living space in Winton's work functions significantly in the context of describing a mythical, commercially marketable, nostalgic image of rural Australia as a place of masculine redefinition and maturation. The analysis of spatiality in this context provides a deeper engagement with the connection between space and gender, highlighting the ambiguous nature of specifically gendered spheres in the architecture of Winton's fictional dwelling places. Deviating from the original Victorian concept of "separate spheres", which set up clear definitions of male and female domestic spaces, Winton's narratives place priority on highlighting the male influence on the originally female domains in the house. It is argued that these spaces reflect the troubling binary between male presence and female absence, highlighting the desires and troubles of the male characters but also female trauma, self-harm and displacement. These are some of the issues this paper addresses, showing how the postcolonial dialectic between place, space and gender can be applied to Winton's fictional "traumascapes" (M. Tumarkin).' (Author's abstract)
Bodies that Speak : Mediating Female Embodiment in Tim Winton's Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , vol. 27 no. 2 2012; (p. 32-50)
Fully Formed Rosemary Neill , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 23 - 24 April 2011; (p. 506)
To mark the thirtieth anniversary of The Australian / Vogel award, Rosemary Neill surveys the highs and lows of a prize that has launched the careers of many leading writers.
Great Expectations Peter Craven , 2010 single work column
— Appears in: Australian Author , December vol. 42 no. 3 2010; (p. 6-9)
She Lures, She Guides, She Quits : Female Characters in Tim Winton's The Riders M. Pilar Baines Alarcos , 2010 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of English Studies , vol. 8 no. 2010; (p. 7-22)
'Tim Winton is an Australian writer whose male characters often defy the traditional concept of masculinity. As for the notion of femininity, however, this kind of defiance is not displayed. In this essay, I study the presentation of the female protagonists in The Riders in order to illustrate this point, bearing in mind the Australian social and cultural context that surrounds them. Winton's fictional women, no matter whether they are strong or weak, are normally depicted according to female archetypes. This leads to their negative portrayal as ambivalent beings, thus making them unreliable and even dangerous, as is the case of Jennifer and Irma. In contrast, Billie is a positive female character. She, who is also significantly a child, combines both feminine and masculine qualities. It is precisely this characteristic that enable her to be her father's protector.' (Author's abstract)
'No One Gives a Fuck about Australia' : Aussies Abroad in The Riders and Homesickness Nathanael O'Reilly , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Bernard Hickey, a Roving Cultural Ambassador : Essays in His Memory. 2009; (p. 177-185)
Tim Winton's Narrative of Belonging : Revisiting Australian Identity through Europe in The Riders Sarah Zapata , 2007-2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Zeitschrift fur Australienstudien , no. 21-22 2007-2008; (p. 157-164)
'The purpose of this paper is to explore the way in which Tim Winton's novel, The Riders, enhances a certain construction of Australian identity by establishing a set of contrasts between Australia and the European continent.' It also explores how 'Winton's novel tackles a very recurrent theme in Australian literature: the centrality of the land and belonging in defining identity'. (p. 158)
The Wide Brown Land : Literary Readings of Space and the Australian Continent Anthony J. Hassall , 2007 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australia : Making Space Meaningful 2007; (p. 45-53)
'In his 1987 poem "Louvres" Les Murray speaks of journeys to 'the three quarters of our continent/set aside for mystic poetry" (2002, 239), a very different reading of Australia's inner space to A.D. Hope's 1939 vision of it as '[t]he Arabian desert of the human mind" (1966, 13) In this paper I review the opposed, contradictory ways in which the inner space of Australia has been perceived by Australian writers, and note changes in those literary perceptions, especially in the last fifty years. In that time what was routinely categerised, by Patrick White among others, as the "Dead heart" (1974, 94) - the disappointing desert encountered by nineteenth=century European explorers looking for another America -has been re-mythologised as the "Red Centre," the symbolic, living heart of the continent. What Barcroft Boake's 1897 poem hauntingly portrayed as out where the dead men lie" (140,-2) is now more commonly imagined as a site of spiritual exploration and psychic renewal, a place where Aboriginal identification with the land is respected and even shared. This change was powerfully symbolised in 1985 by the return to the traditional Anangu owners of the title deeds to the renamed Uluru, the great stone sited at the centre of the continent; but while this re-mythologising has been increasingly influential in literary readings, older, more negative constructions of that space as hostile and sterile have persisted, so that contradictory attitudes towards the inner space of Australia continue to be expressed. In reviewing a selection of those readings, I am conscious that they both distort and influence broader cultural perceptions. I am also aware that literary reconstructions of the past reflect both the attitudes of the time depicted and the current attitudes of the writer, and that separating the two is seldom simple. Finally, I am conscious of the connections between literary readings and those in art and film of the kind documented by Roslynn Hanes in her 1998 study Seeking the Centre: the Australian Desert in Literature, Art and Film, and those in television and advertising. I have however, with the exception of the Postscript, limited my paper to literary readings, with an emphasis on works published since Haynes's study.' (Author's abstract p. 45)
y Mind the Country : Tim Winton's Fiction Salhia Ben-Messahel , Crawley : University of Western Australia , 2006 Z1286107 2006 single work criticism
Winton First Among Peers 2003 single work column
— Appears in: The West Australian , 27 May 2003; (p. 3)
Ahasverus on the Walkabout : The Motif of the Wandering Jew in Contemporary Australian Fiction Gloria Gebhardt , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: Antipodes , June vol. 16 no. 1 2002; (p. 11-16)
The Crisis of Masculinity in Tim Winton's The Riders Barbara Arizti Martin , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: Commonwealth , Spring vol. 24 no. 2 2002; (p. 29-45)
Author's abstract: Tim Winton's work is often populated by strong females and weak males. In his novel The Riders, the author explores the subject of masculine anxiety over the current transformation of gender roles. The protagonist's trip to Europe is an occasion for a journey of self-discovery that leads him to reconsider his relationship with his wife and daughter and his general attitude to life.
The Colonising Victim : Tim Winton's Irish Conceit Jennifer Rutherford , 2001 single work criticism
— Appears in: Flight from Certainty : The Dilemma of Identity and Exile 2001; (p. 153-163)
Wild Interventions Susan Wyndham , 2001 single work criticism biography
— Appears in: The Age , 3 November 2001; (p. 3)
y The Gauche Intruder : Freud, Lacan and the White Australian Fantasy Jennifer Rutherford , Carlton South : Melbourne University Press , 2000 Z821761 2000 single work criticism In attempting to trace the formation of an Australian moral code at the heart of white Australian identity, the study examines the link between morality and aggression in the history of white Australia, thus providing an introduction to a psychoanalytic sociology of Australian culture. It includes discussion of works by Henry Handel Richardson, George Johnston, Patrick White, David Malouf and Tim Winton.
Over There Anthony J. Hassall , 2000 single work criticism
— Appears in: Overland , Summer no. 161 2000; (p. 26-30)
Innocence Abroad Barry Hill , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 3 September 1994; (p. 7)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Believing the Unbelievable John Morrow , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Sunday Age , 4 September 1994; (p. 10)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Winton Takes Risks - and Succeeds Morag Fraser , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 3 September 1994; (p. 11A)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Frenzied Search for Elusive Wife Michael Sharkey , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 17-18 September 1994; (p. rev 6)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Winton Returns to Love and Fear Veronica Sen , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 10 September 1994; (p. C10)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Wanderings of a Lost Spirit Robin Lucas , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 27 September vol. 116 no. 5939 1994; (p. 105)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Waiting Ghosts Katharine England , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: The Advertiser Magazine , 1 October 1994; (p. 14)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Riding to Hell on Tim's Back Nigel Krauth , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , September no. 164 1994; (p. 15-16)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
From the Inside of Madness David A. Myers , 1994 single work review
— Appears in: Quadrant , December vol. 38 no. 12 1994; (p. 79-80)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
A Colonial Boy Robert Brain , 1995 single work review
— Appears in: The Times Literary Supplement , 17 February no. 4794 1995; (p. 20)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Untitled David Coad , 1995 single work review
— Appears in: World Literature Today , Spring vol. 69 no. 2 1995; (p. 430-431)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
The Bad Mother George Stade , 1995 single work review
— Appears in: The New York Times Book Review , 19 November 1995; (p. 14)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Tim Winton's 'Riders' Sends Father on a European Quest Jack Turner , 1995 single work review
— Appears in: Antipodes , December vol. 9 no. 2 1995; (p. 148-149)

— Review of The Riders Tim Winton 1994 single work novel
Ahasverus on the Walkabout : The Motif of the Wandering Jew in Contemporary Australian Fiction Gloria Gebhardt , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: Antipodes , June vol. 16 no. 1 2002; (p. 11-16)
y Tim Winton : The Writer and His Work Michael McGirr , South Yarra : Macmillan Education Australia , 1999 Z1022919 1999 single work criticism Aimed principally at younger readers and students, this work contains biographical information about Winton which situates him in a Western Australian context and has chapters dealing with each of Winton's novels to date. Each chapter concludes with a section 'Questions and Activities'.
Winton First Among Peers 2003 single work column
— Appears in: The West Australian , 27 May 2003; (p. 3)
The Colonising Victim : Tim Winton's Irish Conceit Jennifer Rutherford , 2001 single work criticism
— Appears in: Flight from Certainty : The Dilemma of Identity and Exile 2001; (p. 153-163)
A Look at... Tim Winton's Places and People 1998 single work interview
— Appears in: Magpies : Talking About Books for Children , July vol. 13 no. 3 1998; (p. 20-21)
y Mind the Country : Tim Winton's Fiction Salhia Ben-Messahel , Crawley : University of Western Australia , 2006 Z1286107 2006 single work criticism
'No One Gives a Fuck about Australia' : Aussies Abroad in The Riders and Homesickness Nathanael O'Reilly , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Bernard Hickey, a Roving Cultural Ambassador : Essays in His Memory. 2009; (p. 177-185)
Great Expectations Peter Craven , 2010 single work column
— Appears in: Australian Author , December vol. 42 no. 3 2010; (p. 6-9)
Tim Winton's Narrative of Belonging : Revisiting Australian Identity through Europe in The Riders Sarah Zapata , 2007-2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Zeitschrift fur Australienstudien , no. 21-22 2007-2008; (p. 157-164)
'The purpose of this paper is to explore the way in which Tim Winton's novel, The Riders, enhances a certain construction of Australian identity by establishing a set of contrasts between Australia and the European continent.' It also explores how 'Winton's novel tackles a very recurrent theme in Australian literature: the centrality of the land and belonging in defining identity'. (p. 158)
Fully Formed Rosemary Neill , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 23 - 24 April 2011; (p. 506)
To mark the thirtieth anniversary of The Australian / Vogel award, Rosemary Neill surveys the highs and lows of a prize that has launched the careers of many leading writers.
The Wide Brown Land : Literary Readings of Space and the Australian Continent Anthony J. Hassall , 2007 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australia : Making Space Meaningful 2007; (p. 45-53)
'In his 1987 poem "Louvres" Les Murray speaks of journeys to 'the three quarters of our continent/set aside for mystic poetry" (2002, 239), a very different reading of Australia's inner space to A.D. Hope's 1939 vision of it as '[t]he Arabian desert of the human mind" (1966, 13) In this paper I review the opposed, contradictory ways in which the inner space of Australia has been perceived by Australian writers, and note changes in those literary perceptions, especially in the last fifty years. In that time what was routinely categerised, by Patrick White among others, as the "Dead heart" (1974, 94) - the disappointing desert encountered by nineteenth=century European explorers looking for another America -has been re-mythologised as the "Red Centre," the symbolic, living heart of the continent. What Barcroft Boake's 1897 poem hauntingly portrayed as out where the dead men lie" (140,-2) is now more commonly imagined as a site of spiritual exploration and psychic renewal, a place where Aboriginal identification with the land is respected and even shared. This change was powerfully symbolised in 1985 by the return to the traditional Anangu owners of the title deeds to the renamed Uluru, the great stone sited at the centre of the continent; but while this re-mythologising has been increasingly influential in literary readings, older, more negative constructions of that space as hostile and sterile have persisted, so that contradictory attitudes towards the inner space of Australia continue to be expressed. In reviewing a selection of those readings, I am conscious that they both distort and influence broader cultural perceptions. I am also aware that literary reconstructions of the past reflect both the attitudes of the time depicted and the current attitudes of the writer, and that separating the two is seldom simple. Finally, I am conscious of the connections between literary readings and those in art and film of the kind documented by Roslynn Hanes in her 1998 study Seeking the Centre: the Australian Desert in Literature, Art and Film, and those in television and advertising. I have however, with the exception of the Postscript, limited my paper to literary readings, with an emphasis on works published since Haynes's study.' (Author's abstract p. 45)
She Lures, She Guides, She Quits : Female Characters in Tim Winton's The Riders M. Pilar Baines Alarcos , 2010 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of English Studies , vol. 8 no. 2010; (p. 7-22)
'Tim Winton is an Australian writer whose male characters often defy the traditional concept of masculinity. As for the notion of femininity, however, this kind of defiance is not displayed. In this essay, I study the presentation of the female protagonists in The Riders in order to illustrate this point, bearing in mind the Australian social and cultural context that surrounds them. Winton's fictional women, no matter whether they are strong or weak, are normally depicted according to female archetypes. This leads to their negative portrayal as ambivalent beings, thus making them unreliable and even dangerous, as is the case of Jennifer and Irma. In contrast, Billie is a positive female character. She, who is also significantly a child, combines both feminine and masculine qualities. It is precisely this characteristic that enable her to be her father's protector.' (Author's abstract)
'Mother, Where Art Thou? Absence and Motherhood in Tim Winton’s Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Zeitschrift fur Anglistik und Amerikanistik , vol. 60 no. 2 2012; (p. 141-154)
Abstract: Absent mothers are striking features in Tim Winton's novels, whether induced by death, circumstance or their own will. Motherhood is inextricably linked with trauma and suffering, either on the side of the mothers themselves, their husbands or their children. In this paper I will explain how absence and motherhood together function as metaphors for traumatic displacement and contribute to a redefinition of cultural, national and individual boundaries, while also illuminating problematic gender relations in Australia and their cultural representations. The focus is on a close-text analysis of The Riders (1994) while Winton's other novels will be used to contextualise and strengthen the points made in this paper.' (Author's abstract)
Gendered Spaces : The Poetics of Domesticity in Tim Winton’s Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of the European Association of Studies on Australia, , vol. 3 no. 2 2012; (p. 59-79)
'How can the fictional representation of space and domestic interority be interpreted in fictional works like Dirt Music, The Riders or Winton's latest novel Breath? This article argues that the house as an active living space in Winton's work functions significantly in the context of describing a mythical, commercially marketable, nostalgic image of rural Australia as a place of masculine redefinition and maturation. The analysis of spatiality in this context provides a deeper engagement with the connection between space and gender, highlighting the ambiguous nature of specifically gendered spheres in the architecture of Winton's fictional dwelling places. Deviating from the original Victorian concept of "separate spheres", which set up clear definitions of male and female domestic spaces, Winton's narratives place priority on highlighting the male influence on the originally female domains in the house. It is argued that these spaces reflect the troubling binary between male presence and female absence, highlighting the desires and troubles of the male characters but also female trauma, self-harm and displacement. These are some of the issues this paper addresses, showing how the postcolonial dialectic between place, space and gender can be applied to Winton's fictional "traumascapes" (M. Tumarkin).' (Author's abstract)
Bodies that Speak : Mediating Female Embodiment in Tim Winton's Fiction Hannah Schuerholz , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , vol. 27 no. 2 2012; (p. 32-50)
Literary Ride to the Market Peter Craven , 1995 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Australian , 4 October 1995; (p. 32)
What Can Be Read and What Can Only Be Seen in Tim Winton's Fiction Andrew Taylor , 1996 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , October vol. 17 no. 4 1996; (p. 323-331)
Winton Misses Out on WA Book Prize Andre Malan , 1995 single work column
— Appears in: The West Australian , 4 October 1995; (p. 7)
Outside-Chance Winton Terrified Riders May Race Off with Booker Louise Evans , 1995 single work column
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 6 November 1995; (p. 2)
According to Winton H. A. Willis (interviewer), 1994 single work interview
— Appears in: Eureka Street , September vol. 4 no. 7 1994; (p. 20-25)

Awards

1996 winner TDK Australian Audio Book Awards Overall Award
1996 winner TDK Australian Audio Book Awards Unabridged Fiction Category
1995 winner International Awards Commonwealth Writers Prize South-East Asia and South Pacific Region Best Book from the Region Award
1995 winner 3M Talking Book of the Year Award
1995 shortlisted Victorian Premier's Literary Awards The Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction
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