9213258639313510688.jpg
This image has been sourced from online.
y Shadowboxing selected work   short story  
Issue Details: First known date: 2006 2006
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'A collection of ten linked stories in the life of a boy growing up in the inner-Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy in the 1960s.' (publisher's blurb)

Notes

  • Dedication: For my children.
  • Epigraph: It's a great life - if you don't weaken. (Alma Maree May Corcoran)
  • Speaking to Romona Koval on the ABC's The Book Show on 7 March 2006, Birch indicated that Shadowboxing was autobiographical in a 'psychological', but not a 'realist' sense.
  • Other formats: Also e-book.

Contents

* Contents derived from the Carlton North, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Scribe , 2006 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
The Red House, Tony Birch , 2001 single work short story (p. 1-19)
The Lesson, Tony Birch , 2002 single work short story (p. 21-39)
The Butcher's Wife, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 41-57)
A Disposable Good, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 59-73)
The Bulldozer, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 75-87)
The Return, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 89-104)
Sea of Tranquility, Tony Birch , 2000 single work short story (p. 105-122)
Ashes, Tony Birch , 2002 single work short story (p. 123-141)
Redemption, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 143-159)
The Haircut, Tony Birch , 2006 single work short story (p. 161-178)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Carlton North, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Scribe , 2006 .
      9213258639313510688.jpg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 178p.
      ISBN: 1920769706, 9781920769703
    • Carlton North, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Scribe , 2009 .
      1439844381117063014.jpg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 192p.
      Edition info: New ed.
      ISBN: 9781921640155 (pbk)

Works about this Work

Place, History and Story: Tony Birch and the Yarra River Carolyn Masel , Matthew Ryan , 2016 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , 2016 vol. 31 no. 2 2016;
'This essay examines the three Yarra River stories in Tony Birch’s short fiction collections. ‘The Sea of Tranquillity’ ‘The Chocolate Empire’ and ‘The Toecutters’ all question the historical inscription of the Yarra that favours the culturally dominant account by placing it in relation to alternative stories. The torsion engendered by this questioning is apparent in the stories themselves. They are simultaneously discussions of class-based social exclusion and counter-stories of settlement; settled places are re-inscribed with meanings and histories obscured by the dominant account of ‘settlement’, which it thus critiques. The structure of the contemporary short story, to reveal a truth buried under the mundane details of life, aids Birch’s purpose. The form enacts a propensity to doubling, twinning and contrasting the familiar and the strange, or being at once in the dominant reality of the settler-colonial culture and, by social imposition, in the situation of the other. Hence, Birch’s stories open into narratives drawn from a number of socially marginalised groups, according to class, gender, geography or age. In Birch’s own account of his disillusionment with the institutionally-based academic writing of the post-history wars environment he speaks of embarking on an alternative project to ‘put meat on the bones of history’, a project which involves turning from the Historian’s history to ‘the way that fiction deals with the past and its role in documenting history’: to bring history and story together (‘Trouble’ 235, 241). This essay traces that process in the three Yarra stories.' (Abstract)
Untitled Brooke Davis , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: Bookseller + Publisher Magazine , February vol. 85 no. 7 2006; (p. 49)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
It's Grim Down South, Amid the Claustrophobia of the Fitzroy Slums Phil Brown , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 11-12 March 2006; (p. 12-13)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Streetfighting Man Ceridwen Spark , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 11-12 March 2006; (p. 20-21)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Fighting off Stereotypes and Quelling Old Pains Peter Pierce , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 1 April 2006; (p. 17)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
In Brief : Fiction Steven Gome , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , April no. 280 2006; (p. 61)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Droopy Prose to Match the Scenery Owen Richardson , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 22 April 2006; (p. 22)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Ages of Rage Anne Susskind , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 2 May vol. 124 no. 6518 2006; (p. 68)

— Review of Beyond the Break Sandra Hall 2006 single work novel ; Pictures of Us Todd Alexander 2006 single work novel ; Out of Place Jo Dutton 2006 single work novel ; Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Literature Larissa Behrendt , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: National Indigenous Times , 13 July vol. 5 no. 109 2006; (p. 28)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Untitled Brooke Davis , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: Bookseller + Publisher Magazine , February vol. 85 no. 7 2006; (p. 49)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
It's Grim Down South, Amid the Claustrophobia of the Fitzroy Slums Phil Brown , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 11-12 March 2006; (p. 12-13)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Streetfighting Man Ceridwen Spark , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 11-12 March 2006; (p. 20-21)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Fighting off Stereotypes and Quelling Old Pains Peter Pierce , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 1 April 2006; (p. 17)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
In Brief : Fiction Steven Gome , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , April no. 280 2006; (p. 61)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Droopy Prose to Match the Scenery Owen Richardson , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 22 April 2006; (p. 22)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Ages of Rage Anne Susskind , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 2 May vol. 124 no. 6518 2006; (p. 68)

— Review of Beyond the Break Sandra Hall 2006 single work novel ; Pictures of Us Todd Alexander 2006 single work novel ; Out of Place Jo Dutton 2006 single work novel ; Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Literature Larissa Behrendt , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: National Indigenous Times , 13 July vol. 5 no. 109 2006; (p. 28)

— Review of Shadowboxing Tony Birch 2006 selected work short story
Place, History and Story: Tony Birch and the Yarra River Carolyn Masel , Matthew Ryan , 2016 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , 2016 vol. 31 no. 2 2016;
'This essay examines the three Yarra River stories in Tony Birch’s short fiction collections. ‘The Sea of Tranquillity’ ‘The Chocolate Empire’ and ‘The Toecutters’ all question the historical inscription of the Yarra that favours the culturally dominant account by placing it in relation to alternative stories. The torsion engendered by this questioning is apparent in the stories themselves. They are simultaneously discussions of class-based social exclusion and counter-stories of settlement; settled places are re-inscribed with meanings and histories obscured by the dominant account of ‘settlement’, which it thus critiques. The structure of the contemporary short story, to reveal a truth buried under the mundane details of life, aids Birch’s purpose. The form enacts a propensity to doubling, twinning and contrasting the familiar and the strange, or being at once in the dominant reality of the settler-colonial culture and, by social imposition, in the situation of the other. Hence, Birch’s stories open into narratives drawn from a number of socially marginalised groups, according to class, gender, geography or age. In Birch’s own account of his disillusionment with the institutionally-based academic writing of the post-history wars environment he speaks of embarking on an alternative project to ‘put meat on the bones of history’, a project which involves turning from the Historian’s history to ‘the way that fiction deals with the past and its role in documenting history’: to bring history and story together (‘Trouble’ 235, 241). This essay traces that process in the three Yarra stories.' (Abstract)

Awards

2011 Commended The Kate Challis RAKA Award
2006 shortlisted Queensland Premier's Literary Awards Arts Queensland Steele Rudd Australian Short Story Award This award was known as the Steele Rudd Australian Short Story Award from 1988-2007.
Last amended 3 Jun 2015 12:59:12
Settings:
  • Fitzroy, Fitzroy - Collingwood area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,
  • 1960s
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