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y separately published work icon Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage multi chapter work   criticism  
Issue Details: First known date: 2016... 2016 Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Christina Stead (1902–1983) was an Australian novelist and short-story writer acclaimed for her satirical wit and penetrating psychological characterizations. Stead enjoyed an international reputation in the 1930s and beyond, then went out of favor as a communist-affiliated writer, until she was rediscovered by feminist critics. Her standing is considerable, and in Australia she vies with Patrick White for the laurel of finest Australian novelist.

'In this book, author Michael Ackland argues that the single most important influence on Stead’s life, socialism, has been seriously neglected in studies of her life and work. Ackland delves into Stead’s political formation prior to her departure for London in 1928, arguing that considerable insights can be added to the known record by reviewing these years within a specifically political context, as well as by interrogating Stead’s own accounts of key persons and events. He examines her novels, from Seven Poor Men of Sydney to I’m Dying Laughing and The Man Who Loved Children, and focuses on Stead’s conception of history, of capitalist finance, and on the significance of the key historical moments that frame her works.

'In tracing the trajectory of her work, Ackland illuminates how Stead was, as a well-informed Marxist critic underscored, a product of thirties. Steeped in socialist literature and steeled to withstand ideological adversity, Stead emerged at the end of the decade a strongly committed novelist, whose intellectual idealism and convictions could, as coming decades would show, long withstand privation, heartbreaks and the unwelcome lessons of history.

'This is an important book for collections in Australian literature, comparative literature, world literature, and women's studies.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

Notes

  • Dedication: For Hans and Leo, Gunda and Olaf, Johen, Jutta and Knut - for fifty years of warmest trust and friendship: es hatte kaum besser sein konnen. 

  • Table of Contents

    • Acknowledgements xi
    • Chapter 1: Prologue 1
    • Chapter 2: A Socialist Awakening 21
    • Chapter 3: Seven Poor Men Of Sydney and the Proletarian Novel 59
    • Chapter 4: The Politics of Stead’s Early Fiction 95
    • Chapter 5: Finance Capitalism and House of All Nations 133
    • Chapter 6: The Allure And Meaning of America 167
    • Chapter 7: The New Deal and The Man Who Loved Children 197
    • Chapter 8: Epilogue 223
    • Works Cited 229
    • Index 241

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Amherst, New York (State),
      c
      United States of America (USA),
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Cambria Press ,
      2016 .
      image of person or book cover 58114996073586536.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 288p.p.
      Note/s:
      • Published 25 November 2016.

      ISBN: 9781604979336
      Series: y separately published work icon Cambria Australian Literature Series Susan Lever (editor), Cambria Press (publisher), Amherst : Cambria Press , 2008- Z1869108 2008 series - publisher criticism

      The Cambria Australian Literature Series focuses on critical studies of writing by Australians, with a particular emphasis on contemporary Australian fiction. In recent decades Australian fiction publishing has outstripped critical study, with the work of many important writers receiving little more critical attention than newspaper and journal reviews, with occasional articles in scholarly journals or collections by diverse critics. This series gives an opportunity for sustained consideration of a writer’s full career. In each book, an individual critic engages with the work of a writer, assisting other scholars, students and general readers in understanding its complexities. Each book seeks to find an appropriate, original and lively approach to the writer in question. In particular, the series places the writing not only within Australian culture but also in the context of international developments in the novel.

      Source: Publisher's website.

Works about this Work

Michael Ackland's Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage Anne Pender , 2018 single work review
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 3 no. 18 2018;

— Review of Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage Michael Ackland , 2016 multi chapter work criticism

'I once boldly suggested to film director Bruce Beresford that he might consider making a film based on Christina Stead’s last, and masterful novel, I’m Dying Laughing. He read it and later gave me to understand that he thought it would be rather difficult to adapt for film because it revolved around talking and did not offer a great deal of action. He was right of course. So many of Stead’s novels are focussed on characters talking, arguing, deliberating and pontificating, and their topics are frequently complex, referential and highly political. They therefore require a lot from their reader.'  (Introduction)

Michael Ackland's Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage Anne Pender , 2018 single work review
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 3 no. 18 2018;

— Review of Christina Stead and the Socialist Heritage Michael Ackland , 2016 multi chapter work criticism

'I once boldly suggested to film director Bruce Beresford that he might consider making a film based on Christina Stead’s last, and masterful novel, I’m Dying Laughing. He read it and later gave me to understand that he thought it would be rather difficult to adapt for film because it revolved around talking and did not offer a great deal of action. He was right of course. So many of Stead’s novels are focussed on characters talking, arguing, deliberating and pontificating, and their topics are frequently complex, referential and highly political. They therefore require a lot from their reader.'  (Introduction)

Last amended 17 Apr 2018 13:05:22
Subjects:
  • 1930s
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