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Alternative title: ABR
Issue Details: First known date: 2018... no. 403 August 2018 of Australian Book Review est. 1961 Australian Book Review
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  • Aso includes 2018's shortlisted ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize short story, Between the Mountain and the Sea, by Sharmini Aphrodite


* Contents derived from the 2018 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
'Fields of the Past' : The Battle Between History and Memory, Marilyn Lake , single work essay

 'In pondering the construction of public memory in Ireland, the eminent American historian Richard White insisted on the demythologising work of history as a discipline: ‘History is the enemy of memory. The two stalk each other across the fields of the past, claiming the same terrain. History forges weapons from what memory has forgotten or suppressed.’ In Best We Forget: The war for white Australia, 1914–18, Peter Cochrane wants to jog Australia’s memory by reminding us that the celebrated myth of Anzac obscures a problematic history. But in joining the battle between history and memory, he notes the warning of his friend, the late John Hirst, who wrote: ‘My own view is that history will never beat myth.’ But does this assumed opposition really hold?'  (Introduction)

(p. 11-12)
Vasco, Claire Aman , single work short story (p. 24-27)
Syllabic Patterningi"He went down to the shed to look for a chook", Michael Farrell , single work poetry (p. 29)
Homesickness, Michael Brennan , single work essay
— Review of The Fireflies of Autumn Moreno Giovannoni , 2014 single work short story ;

'Moreno Giovannoni’s collection of tales – populous and baggy, earthy and engrossing – offers not a history but the lifeblood, the living memory, of a small town in northern Italy called San Ginese, or more specifically a hamlet in its shadow called Villora. Villora is the point of departure and return for generations of Sanginesini, and the locus of the tales told.' (Introduction)

(p. 32)
Wanderings, Suzie Gibson , single work essay
— Review of Saint Antony in His Desert Anthony Uhlmann , 2018 single work novel ;

'With his maiden voyage into fiction, Anthony Uhlmann, a professor of English at Western Sydney University, has produced an ambitious novel that dramatises the intertwining of time and memorySaint Antony in His Desert is a literary thought-experiment partly concerned with a famous quarrel between Albert Einstein and French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson, where the German physicist’s theory of relativity was unwisely rejected by the latter. Some believe that their disagreement led to the division between philosophy and science. Ingeniously, Uhlmann’s novel seeks to unearth a common ground between these thinkers, and undertakes this task by exploring time as an intuitive, psychological, and even literary phenomenon.' (Introduction)

(p. 33)
Audacity, Barnaby Smith , single work essay
— Review of Christos Tsiolkas on Patrick White Christos Tsiolkas , 2018 single work essay ;
(p. 41-42)
On Flanagan, Susan Lever , single work essay
— Review of Richard Flanagan : Critical Essays 2018 anthology criticism ;

'With The Narrow Road to the Deep North (2013), Richard Flanagan became Australia’s third winner of the prestigious Man Booker Prize for Fiction, leading many people to pick up his novels for the first time and to look for some critical support in reading them. After my own review of the novel in SRB, I was bailed up by friends – many of whom had read it in book groups – to report on lively disagreements (often with my review). Apart from reviews, there were a few articles scattered in academic journals but no easily accessible, book-length study. So this new collection of essays on his work, edited by Robert Dixon, is a welcome addition to the ongoing discussion of our latest literary superstar.' (Introduction)

(p. 42-43)
Ruins, Madelaine Lucas , single work short story (p. 44-48)
Intoxicating Mania, Shannon Burns , single work essay
— Review of The Rapids : Ways of Looking at Mania Sam Twyford-Moore , 2018 single work autobiography ;

In The Rapids: Ways of looking at mania, Sam Twyford-Moore takes a personal, exploratory, and speculative approach to the subject of mania. Because the author has been significantly governed by manic episodes on several occasions (he was diagnosed with manic depression as he ‘came into adulthood’), The Rapids offers an insider’s perspective. It also considers some of the public and cultural manifestations of the illness, via figures as diverse as Delmore Schwartz, Saul Bellow, Kanye West, Carrie Fisher, Andrew Johns, and Matthew Newton, but with a particular focus on literature and film. (Introduction)

(p. 52)
To Belong and Also to Be Free : An Insider-Outsider View, Dorothy Driver , single work essay
— Review of Always Another Country : A Memoir of Exile and Home Sisonke Msimang , 2018 single work autobiography ;

'Msimang’s memoir, Always Another Country, registers her relocation from South Africa to Australia, but its overall coverage is the series of moves she made, mostly with parents and siblings, from Zambia, where she was born, to Kenya, Canada, and the United States, usually on account of her father’s political activity (as a young man he had been recruited to the armed wing of the African National Congress). These countries, she suggests, have their own varieties of racism, but the memoir also traces the stealthy shifts of power via class and gender in their intersections with race.' (Excerpt)

(p. 53-54)
Traumarchy, Ceridwen Spark , single work essay
— Review of Traumata Meera Anne Atkinson , 2018 single work autobiography ;

'At first glance, Traumata seems to provide an exception to the rule not to judge a book by its cover. Featuring photos of the author’s mother, a woman in her forties, alongside photos of the young Atkinson on the precipice of adolescence, the cover portrays the filial relationship that is central in this memoir. But Atkinson’s exploration is much more kaleidoscopic than the cover suggests. While the familial bonds and betrayal hinted at in these pictures are evident in the book, the author is chiefly concerned with what lies outside the frame: namely, the social forces that shape our selves and our intimate relationships.' (Introduction)

(p. 54-55)
Tracks Were Buckled and Warped : Charging Attitudes to Martially Denuded POWs, Carolyn Holbrook , single work essay
— Review of The Battle Within : POWs In Postwar Australia Christina Twomey , 2018 multi chapter work biography ;
(p. 58-59)
'By Night and By Day', Geoffrey Blainey , single work review

'General ‘Pompey’ Elliott was a famous Australian in 1918, half forgotten seventy years later, and is now a national military hero. This Anzac Day he stood high. On French soil he was praised by France’s prime minister, Édouard Philippe, in one of the most mesmerising and sensitive speeches ever offered by a European leader to Australian ears. Probably Elliott now stands just below General Sir John Monash in the honour roll of Australia’s military leaders, though we cannot foretell whether Pompey’s status – he was a cult figure in his day – will persist.' (Introduction)

(p. 60)
Tsunami, Robert Reynolds , single work review

 'Midway through this account of his life as a gay doctor who specialised in sexually transmitted infections, David Bradford diagnoses his first case of AIDS. It is February 1985 and Bradford is the director of the Melbourne Communicable Diseases Centre (MCDC) and the chief venereologist of Victoria. His patient James is a working class Maltese-Australian man in his late twenties whom Bradford had met while conducting a clinic testing for syphilis at a gay sauna. James, a good-looking and popular patron, presents with troubling symptoms: black spots on his skin; swollen glands; weight loss. He is terrified. Bradford gently breaks the probable diagnosis of AIDS. ‘James looked like a scared school boy.’ He departs with a referral to the Fairfield Infectious Diseases Hospital and Bradford’s home phone number. Bradford watches him leave and then takes a moment to collect himself. ‘I trembled for the future. Was James the first of many? Was my practice now to become an endless succession of gay men turning up with AIDS … Was my lot going to be to provide a medical service for my patients as they gradually became weaker, and eventually died because their immune systems had shut down completely? What a grim outlook I was facing.’ (Introduction)

(p. 61)
Francesca Sasnaitis Reviews 'Meanjin A–Z : Fine Fiction 1980 to Now' Edited by Jonathan Green, Francesca Sasnaitis , single work review
— Review of Meanjin A-Z : Fiction 1980 to Now 2018 anthology short story ;

'The narrator of David Malouf’s virtuosic ‘A Traveller’s Tale’ (1982) describes Queensland’s far north as ‘a place of transformations’ and unwittingly provides us with an epigraph for this collection.'  (Introduction)

(p. 66)
Hillary and Donald and Julia and George : Jennifer Maiden's Phenomenal Oeuvre, Gig Ryan , single work review

'Jennifer Maiden’s first books, Tactics (1974) and The Problem of Evil (1975), introduced a fantastically complex and enquiring poetry, with strangely fragmentary assemblages of character wrought from conflict. Both books were partly inspired by television’s gory nightly footage of the Vietnam War. While much poetry in the 1970s was of seditiously unvarnished protest, Maiden’s was intricate and stylised, poems toppling with moral dilemmas and extraordinary images, or restrained in pure lyricism such as ‘The Windward Side’: ‘The island has a windward side / walkless long and crossless wide / & winds across the cliff-face ride: / a woman’s face / caved in with pride / that craves for every blow.’ (Introduction)

(p. 67-68)
'Cancel the Lot', Tim Wright , single work review

'A few pages into this collection we read the line: ‘all of it is lies’. ‘It’ signals the irritation that motivates much of Pam Brown’s writing in click here for what we do. Memory, in these poems, is a problem. Brown’s is very much a poetry of movement: she desires to stay light and mobile, not to be detained by memory (in this way she sometimes brings to mind a serious hiker, weighing the items in her pack by the gram). And yet, she cannot help but take on that extra weight of the past; her present is perforated by it. This dialectic of memory and forgetting runs through the collection. For Brown especially, there is no satisfactory point of rest or synthesis: it is not only memory’s burden that she has to contend with but also the particular ways that the memories of her own generation of sixty-eighters have been imagined and historicised.'  (Introduction)

(p. 69)
Publisher of the Month, single work column (p. 70)
[Review] Brothers Wreck, Ben Brooker , single work review (p. 73)
[Review] Barry Humphries : The Man Behind the Mask, Jim Davidson , single work review (p. 74)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Last amended 6 Aug 2018 10:27:27
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