The Intro single work   poetry   humour   "'Er name's Doreen...Well, spare me bloomin' days!"
  • Author: C. J. Dennis http://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/dennis-c-j-clarence-james
Issue Details: First known date: 1911 1911
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Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Notes:
Minor title variations appear in some texts
  • Appears in:
    y The Bulletin vol. 32 no. 1642 3 August 1911 Z609747 1911 periodical issue 1911 pg. 11
  • Appears in:
    y The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke C. J. Dennis , Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1915 Z429076 1915 selected work poetry humour

    Arguably the most popular book of poetry ever produced in Australia, The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke was first published in October 1915. Its success was immediate and unprecedented for a book of Australian verse. The first edition of 2,480 copies sold out within weeks, and by the end of February 1916 the book had reached a fifth impression and was still selling well. Tongue firmly in cheek, C. J. Dennis informed his publishers Angus and Robertson that the work's 'success [was] becoming monotonous'. There was more monotony to come, however: the book sold more than 100,000 copies in the first five years after its publication, and was rarely out of print in Dennis's lifetime. Added to this, there were film, stage, and musical versions of the work, as well as recitals given by popular entertainers. In many respects, 'The Sentimental Bloke' became a phenomenon of popular culture that took on a life of its own.

    Dennis later claimed that the idea for 'The Sentimental Bloke' came from a 'racy' young man from Melbourne he had met in Toolangi. According to Dennis' wife Margaret Herron, the young man had fallen in love with a farmer's daughter, but the farmer disapproved and forbade her from having anything to do with him. The Melbourne man was said to have complained to Dennis, 'what sort of bloke do they think I am? Blimey, anyone would think I was a crook! Ain't a bloke got sisters of his own?' In Dennis's imagination, this frustrated love affair eventually became a story in which a tough, streetwise young larrikin gives up his dissolute ways for domestic happiness with his sweetheart. A crucial factor in the success of Dennis's 'Sentimental Bloke' verse was that it was narrated from the point of view of 'the Bloke', employing a slang idiom appropriate to the character. In his correspondence with his publishers, Dennis noted that 'the stuff, while not having any considerable literary merit, is, I believe, extremely popular'.

    Sydney : Angus and Robertson , 1915
    pg. 19-23
  • Appears in:
    y Favourite Australian Poems Ian Mudie (editor), Adelaide : Rigby , 1963 Z337064 1963 anthology poetry humour Adelaide : Rigby , 1963 pg. 37-40
  • Appears in:
    y The Illustrated Treasury of Australian Verse Beatrice Davis , Melbourne : Nelson , 1984 Z315151 1984 anthology poetry biography Melbourne : Nelson , 1984 pg. 98-101
  • Appears in:
    y Selected Works of C. J. Dennis C. J. Dennis , North Ryde : Angus and Robertson , 1988 Z127738 1988 selected work poetry humour North Ryde : Angus and Robertson , 1988 pg. 23-25
  • Appears in:
    y Favourite Poems of C. J. Dennis C. J. Dennis , Frenchs Forest : Child and Associates , 1989 Z242712 1989 selected work poetry Frenchs Forest : Child and Associates , 1989 pg. 10-13
  • Appears in:
    y The Illustrated Treasury of Australian Verse Beatrice Davis , Melbourne : Nelson , 1984 Z315151 1984 anthology poetry biography Sydney : State Library of New South Wales Press , 1996 pg. 98-101
  • Appears in:
    y Australian Poetry Since 1788 Geoffrey Lehmann (editor), Robert Gray (editor), Sydney : University of New South Wales Press , 2011 Z1803846 2011 anthology poetry (taught in 1 units) 'A good poem is one that the world can’t forget or is delighted to rediscover. This landmark anthology of Australian poetry, edited by two of Australia’s foremost poets, Geoffrey Lehmann and Robert Gray, contains such poems. It is the first of its kind for Australia and promises to become a classic. Included here are Australia’s major poets, and lesser-known but equally affecting ones, and all manifestations of Australian poetry since 1788, from concrete poems to prose poems, from the cerebral to the naïve, from the humorous to the confessional, and from formal to free verse. Translations of some striking Aboriginal song poems are one of the high points. Containing over 1000 poems from 170 Australian poets, as well as short critical biographies, this careful reevaluation of Australian poetry makes this a superb book that can be read and enjoyed over a lifetime.' (From the publisher's website.) Sydney : University of New South Wales Press , 2011 pg. 188-191

Works about this Work

'Parnassus Slope' : C. J. Dennis's First Years in Victoria Philip Butterss , 2007 single work biography
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 67 no. 1-2 2007; (p. 254-271)
'Parnassus Slope' : C. J. Dennis's First Years in Victoria Philip Butterss , 2007 single work biography
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 67 no. 1-2 2007; (p. 254-271)
Last amended 3 Jun 2013 14:54:25
Subjects:
  • Urban,
  • Melbourne, Victoria,
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