Issue Details: First known date: 2009 2009
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'In the past two years much has been said, by both media and government, about the role of secondary English teachers in promoting "classic" Australian literature. This article contends that the dominant voices in this discourse, which emphasise cultural heritage over rational and theorised approaches to texts, fail to recognise the ways in which critical theory can be used to facilitate student connection and engagement with classic works, and thus maintain rather than bridge cultural and historic divides. To explore the argument, this paper draws on a classic Australian text that continues to be much used (and loved) in secondary classrooms: Jessica Anderson's Tirra Lirra by the River. My aim is to both explore a theoretical paradigm which will offer a new reading of this significant Australian text, and also to suggest an approach to reading and teaching classic Australian literature which investigates an alternative to the more traditional pedagogies that have dominated media responses to this issue.' (Author's abstract.)

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Works about this Work

Magwitch Madness : Archive Fever and the Teaching of Australian Literature in Subject English Larissa McLean-Davies , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Teaching Australian Literature : From Classroom Conversations to National Imaginings 2011; (p. 129-152)
'...Magwitch madness...has been inspired by Derrida's notion of 'archive fever' - the 'compulsive, repetitive and nostalgic desire for the archive, an irrepressible desire to return to the origin' (Derrida, 1998, p. 9). Like the convict Magwitch in Charles Dickens's novel, who is relocated to Australia, but remains imaginatively and materially linked to the centre of the Empire through his patronage of the boy Philip Pirrip (Pip), contemporary manifestations of Magwitch madness, whether they be in curriculum documents, media debates, text selection or pedagogical practices, are distinguished by a nostalgia for classic texts...and metaphorical and virtual proximity to the cultural capital that these classic works represent. ...

In this chapter, I will examine some contemporary manifestation of Magwitch madness in Some Australasian texts set for study in senior English. Thorough this analysis, I will pursue the connection between these texts and a more systemic manifestation of this condition in the recent debate around the teaching of Australian literature and in the Australian Curriculum: English. In the final section of this chapter, I will explore the implications of Magwitch madness for classroom practice, by drawing on data collected in four diverse Victorian secondary schools in 2010 as part of the project National Stories: Teaching Australian Literature in Secondary English. Through the examination of these various and inter-connected expressions of antipodean archive fever in text, curriculum and practice, this chapter will map some of the complexities and challenges of teaching Australian literature in twenty-first century classrooms.' (From author's introduction, 130, 131-132)
Visual Identities : Australianness in Australian Picture Books Pam Macintyre , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Teaching Australian Literature : From Classroom Conversations to National Imaginings 2011; (p. 352-368)
‘The literature written for young people can be a vehicle for mediating change in mainstream attitudes, or it can confirm existing values. As with all literature, it carries ideologies. In this chapter, I will focus on the picture book, which constructs its meanings through dual visual and written texts. In particular, I will analyse selected, recent award-winning Australian picture books for their representations of ‘Australianness’.’ (From author’s introduction, p. 352)
Magwitch Madness : Archive Fever and the Teaching of Australian Literature in Subject English Larissa McLean-Davies , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Teaching Australian Literature : From Classroom Conversations to National Imaginings 2011; (p. 129-152)
'...Magwitch madness...has been inspired by Derrida's notion of 'archive fever' - the 'compulsive, repetitive and nostalgic desire for the archive, an irrepressible desire to return to the origin' (Derrida, 1998, p. 9). Like the convict Magwitch in Charles Dickens's novel, who is relocated to Australia, but remains imaginatively and materially linked to the centre of the Empire through his patronage of the boy Philip Pirrip (Pip), contemporary manifestations of Magwitch madness, whether they be in curriculum documents, media debates, text selection or pedagogical practices, are distinguished by a nostalgia for classic texts...and metaphorical and virtual proximity to the cultural capital that these classic works represent. ...

In this chapter, I will examine some contemporary manifestation of Magwitch madness in Some Australasian texts set for study in senior English. Thorough this analysis, I will pursue the connection between these texts and a more systemic manifestation of this condition in the recent debate around the teaching of Australian literature and in the Australian Curriculum: English. In the final section of this chapter, I will explore the implications of Magwitch madness for classroom practice, by drawing on data collected in four diverse Victorian secondary schools in 2010 as part of the project National Stories: Teaching Australian Literature in Secondary English. Through the examination of these various and inter-connected expressions of antipodean archive fever in text, curriculum and practice, this chapter will map some of the complexities and challenges of teaching Australian literature in twenty-first century classrooms.' (From author's introduction, 130, 131-132)
Visual Identities : Australianness in Australian Picture Books Pam Macintyre , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Teaching Australian Literature : From Classroom Conversations to National Imaginings 2011; (p. 352-368)
‘The literature written for young people can be a vehicle for mediating change in mainstream attitudes, or it can confirm existing values. As with all literature, it carries ideologies. In this chapter, I will focus on the picture book, which constructs its meanings through dual visual and written texts. In particular, I will analyse selected, recent award-winning Australian picture books for their representations of ‘Australianness’.’ (From author’s introduction, p. 352)
Last amended 7 Dec 2009 13:34:15
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