AustLit logo
Issue Details: First known date: 2016... 2016 Shamanism in the Future : Ambelin Kwaymullina's Interrogation of Ashala Wolf
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Mircea Eliade (1907-86) co-existed in two worlds, the one of fantasy stories, the other of research into spirituality. In terms of fantasy fiction, Peter Lowentrout recognises the modern day relevance and need for Eliade's creative work with the sacred. In regard to his religious work, Eliade is regarded as 'one of the twentieth century's outstanding religious scholars.' and his Shamanism : Archaic Techniques of Ecstasy was considered a classic of its time. For Eliade, documenting the journey of metaphysical discovery was where his two worlds met. The documenting of the spiritual journey in fiction is neither new or unique to Eliade. Henry James documents the spiritual journey of his character Lewis Lambert Strether in The Ambassadors and references  Honore de Balzac's Louis Lambert (1832-33) which concerns a mystical thinker who ''while trying to write a treatise on the spiritual nature of the will falls in love with one Mll. De Villenois and then, just before his marriage, into a cataleptic fit. When Louis Lambert awakens he has transcended both reality and sanity.' Additionally, as the above example demonstrates, following a spiritual journey of a character does not necessarily mean a story will be considered speculative fiction or fantasy, for traditionally neither James nor Balzac are  catergorised as this type of writer. However, recognising the placement of a character on such a journey within the context of a science fiction/ fantasy can offer insight to the significance of the story. Furthermore, understanding the role of the shaman, as Eliade's dual life reveals, may also offer insight in the interpretation of fiction such as Ambelin Kwaymullina's The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf.' (Introduction)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Last amended 26 Sep 2017 13:13:05
3-9 Shamanism in the Future : Ambelin Kwaymullina's Interrogation of Ashala Wolfsmall AustLit logo Science Fiction : A Review of Speculative Fiction