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Issue Details: First known date: 2017... October 2017 of Sydney Review of Books est. 2013 Sydney Review of Books
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* Contents derived from the 2017 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Noise and Voice : An Interview with Amanda Stewart, Justin Clemens (interviewer), single work interview

'Amanda Stewart is a poet, author and composer/performer. As well as writing poetry, she is interested in expanding poetic notions to other forms and has worked extensively in new music, radio, film, theatre, dance, sound poetry and new media environments. Some of her poetry utilises more traditional literary devices while other works aim to make an intervention at the level of the materiality of language, itself, exploring a range of conceptual approaches that challenge how we see and hear language structures. She is currently working on a new book of poetry, collaborating on several new music and theatre projects and producing a solo LP.'  (Introduction)

Oracles and the Intellect : James McAuley in the Centenary of His Birth, Simon West , single work essay

'‘It was a pretty idle afternoon in Victoria Barracks’, McAuley would later say. ‘I suppose we must have started about lunchtime.’ What followed is well known. In October 1943 two young poets, James McAuley and Harold Stewart created the fictitious poet Ern Malley, whose slim manuscript of surreal poems, The Darkening Ecliptic, they sent to Max Harris and his magazine Angry Penguins. The idea was to ridicule this new movement of ‘garish images without coherent meaning and structure’. McAuley famously described how,'  (Introduction) 

Letter from Iceland, Gig Ryan , single work prose

'On the door of Grái Kötturinn cafe is the painted face of a grey cat with green eyes. It grins awkwardly, its crooked white whiskers etched into the paint in thin lines like scratches. Although I had my eye out for the Grái Kötturinn, I almost missed it as I walked down Hverfisgata, the street which runs parallel to the harbour shoreline of Reykjavík. Seeing the painted grey cat, I open the red door and enter the cafe, a small room partitioned by bookshelves.' (Introduction)

The Joy and Misery of Cybersex, Oscar Schwartz , single work essay

'It is a day when compulsion is getting the better of me. I have plenty of work to do, and a clear list written, setting out my day, task by task. But after breakfast, I spend too much time checking emails and Twitter in that first crucial hour, and so, throughout the rest of the morning I am distracted. I feel compelled, in an almost physical way, to check my email and Twitter at the end of every task. And then, if I go to the bathroom or get a glass of water, my phone accompanies me, and I’m looking at things on Instagram. No escape. It is now 12.30pm, and so far, entirely unproductive. I have an unpleasant droning in my head that comes from the endless feed of other people’s thoughts.'  (Introduction)

Gig Ryan on Rae Desmond Jones (1941-2017), Gig Ryan , single work obituary

'Rae Desmond Jones has stated that for him poetry and politics are mutually contradictory pursuits, yet his poetry, concerned with how people and classes interact, is, like all art, necessarily political. Poems explore, often comically, types of capital, and its deployment of power, from the cruising ‘sharks’ in the street menacing bypassers, to teacher-student relationships finally pushed into hatred: ‘the room constricts us all / i almost say get out / go back to your DVDs & your hopeless dreams: / be unemployable… let there be war between us’ (‘Decline and fall’). Jones limns a dichotomy between the powerful and the powerless, fumigating, and sometimes almost deifying, its ambiguity and irresolvability.'  (Introduction)

Felicity Castagna, Fiona Wright (interviewer), single work interview

'Six Degrees from the City is a podcast about writing in Western Sydney, hosted by the writer and critic Fiona Wright. In each episode features a writer based in or hailing from the western suburbs of Sydney, one of the most diverse – as well as most maligned – areas in Australia, and the site of some of our most interesting and challenging literature and conversations. This episode features the prize-winning novellist (and newly-turned playwright) Felicity Castagna.' (Introduction)

Craveñho’s Universe, Ben Etherington , single work criticism

'In early 2016, a writer from Western Sydney, let’s call him Lucas Carmanito, expressed some opinions in Meanjin. It was a self-described ‘screed’/‘tirade’ against… well, a lot of people. Or, at least, a lot of figures standing in for people: ‘[those] with fantasies of finding a home amid [artists]’, ‘arts community dreamer’, ‘social arts hopeful’, ‘change makers’, ‘king creators’, ‘uninvited guardians of language’, ‘political animals’, ‘demi-gods of arts management’, ‘small masters of today’, ‘social climbers of the arts’, ‘anti-artists’, ‘phoneys’, ‘vampires in our midst’, ‘fakes’, ‘hucksters’, ‘devious characters’, ‘sly culture creepers’, ‘malignants’, ‘noxious weed-lingerers’, ‘Melbourne literati mafia’, ‘cultural gorillas’, ‘Melbourne-centred lit-scene mobsters’, ‘resident fakes’, ‘anti-art overlords’, and ‘cynical shysters’. That several of these figures evoke the kind of sharp-taking film character that talks about ‘wise guys’ was no coincidence. Gore Vidal was the presiding muse, and Carmanito began by glossing one of his provocative generalisations...'  (Introduction)

In the Breech : Sofie Laguna’s The Choke, Sophia Barnes , single work column

'Sofie Laguna was a successful writer of children’s and YA fiction before publishing her first novel for adults, One Foot Wrong, in 2008. Readers of that startling debut, or of her 2015 Miles Franklin Award winner The Eye of the Sheep, will find many familiar themes in her latest novel The Choke. Each is concerned with the struggle of a vulnerable child to define and to protect him- or herself in a grown-up world; each an astute, affecting exploration of the particular pressures that parental neglect and violence place on the children who observe and absorb it. Laguna’s subject matter is often confronting, the families she depicts beset by discord or economic hardship, her young protagonists forced to fend for themselves in harrowing circumstances. Yet while she takes her readers into what is very dark territory, exploring the effects of serious trauma and abuse, her novels are not bleak. The strength of her young narrators, their resilience and imagination, allows her to retain a crucial element of hope – even the promise of redemption – in the face of enormous suffering.' (Introduction)

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Last amended 30 Oct 2017 09:55:04
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