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y separately published work icon JASAL periodical issue   peer reviewed assertion
Alternative title: Australian Literature and Place-Making
Issue Details: First known date: 2018... vol. 1 no. 18 2018 of JASAL est. 2002 JASAL
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Much attention has been given to the representation of place in Australian literature (e.g. Gerster; Darian-Smith, Gunner and Nuttall; Haynes; Cranston and Zeller), but comparably little to this literature’s participation in the production, or making, of place. This special issue brings together scholars working in a field that can be identified by various critical and historical movements in literary and cultural studies which constellate around questions of literature’s intersections with the materiality of place. This field includes literary and cultural geography, psychogeography, critical regionalism, new materialisms, spatial history, and place-making studies. While diverse and dynamic, a commonality across these theoretical and methodological approaches is the understanding of place as an unbounded, non-geographically determined, and relationally constituted, real-world context for practices of living and meaning-making; and the recognition of complex, more than material, and more than human forces, in the ongoing constitution of place.' (Introduction)

Contents

* Contents derived from the 2018 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Australian Literature and Place-Making, Emily Potter , Brigid Magner , single work criticism

'This special issue showcases the diverse ways in which Australian literature and place-making are brought together in contemporary literary scholarship. The seven essays, as well as the creative work by artist and scholar Ross Gibson, illuminate place as intimately constituted by narrative practice, and reflexively, show how geographies and environments inform literary forms, modes and, to use Jennifer Hamilton’s productive term, ‘tones.’ Poetics and placemaking are closely bound. This is of particular consequence in our national context, where ongoing cultures of colonisation, and the political potential of decolonising practices, are both enabled by the kinds of stories we tell both about and through our occupation of place. Storytelling is never neutral, nor is it dematerial. It is always, profoundly, active and has effects on the composition of the world; it is also collaborative, and not always with other human actors. Thinking about a potentially decolonised place requires an interrogation of what enables the enduring capacity of space to exclude and dispossess. It means understanding how words ‘do’ work. The essays included here understand this work in a range of ways and through distinct frames.' (1)

‘Bluster Town’—An Animated Poem for Public Space at Wynyard in Sydney, Ross Gibson , single work poetry essay

'In early 2016 a call went out, seeking Expressions of Interest in a new segment of government infrastructure: ‘Transport for NSW is interested in commissioning moving image art for the “Wynyard Walk” between Wynyard Station and Barangaroo in Sydney.’1 I was one of a small group selected to offer prototypes and, eventually, to generate a complete artwork.' 

Crafting “Literary Sense of Place” : the Generative Work of Literary Place-making, Meg Mundell , single work criticism

'This paper examines the how of literary wheres. As makers of literary works, creative writers are tasked with evoking place on the page. While the nexus of place and literature is increasingly recognised as fertile scholarly ground, the specifics of how writers actually “make” literary places remain opaque and under-researched. I seek to address this gap by exploring how literary place is constituted through creative practice. Focusing on the work of Australian writer Tony Birch, I document a range of generative tools creative writers may use to produce what I call “literary sense of place”. Drawing on interview-based case studies and key concepts from human geography, I analyse how these practitioners harness various “off-page” modes of enquiry to evoke place compellingly in textual form. While my main focus is creative practice, I also examine the resultant literary texts to help illuminate how process manifests in content. By profiling a range of “place-oriented experiential techniques (POETs)” – including site visits, memory, direct encounters, sensory attentiveness, “vicarious emplacement”, socio-cultural understandings, and happenstance – I present a fine-grained account of literary place-making from a practitioners’ perspective. I conclude that producing literary place is a generative, cumulative and associative process, in which writers mobilise a rich array of lived sensations, emotions, memories, understandings and actions. In foregrounding these “backstage” modes of creative labour, this paper helps clarify how writers deploy both personal and shared experiences to render literary place in resonant ways.' (Publication abstract)

Rewriting Redevelopment : The Anti-Proprietorial Tone in Sydney Place-Writing, Jennifer Hamilton , single work criticism

'Corporate and government place-making practices are designed to make place a more desirable commodity. In Sydney, this activity capitalises on the extant settler colonial drive towards property ownership. In this context, the labours of artists are often engaged to cultivate an interesting and sophisticated cultural atmosphere in areas that are undergoing top-down redevelopment. The role of literary arts is curious in this context because it does not cultivate the same configurations of community as other types of creative practice. By drawing a distinction between a reading (a live event) and close reading (a studious reflection), this essay engages in the latter as a form of counter-cultural place making. This is specifically the case in relation to two works—Fiona McGregor's novel Indelible Ink (2010) and Brenda Saunders' poem "Sydney Real Estate: FOR SALE" (2012)—that represent critical perspectives on the commodification of place. By engaging in a close reading of these texts, this essay serves the dual purpose of exploring the role of ecocritical literary studies in the real-world oriented field of Environmental Humanities.' (Publication abstract)

Urban Imaginaries, Homelessness, and the Literary City : Alexis Wright’s The Swan Book and Janette Turner Hospital’s The Last Magician, David Harris , single work criticism

'With urban imaginaries and city-making in mind, and cognisant of the complicity of cities in socio-ecological crises, this paper responds to recent events in Melbourne and Sydney involving the expansion of certain powers to penalise the disadvantaged and homeless, and to clean up city streets. I discern in these events the material and discursive articulations of capitalist-colonial urban imaginaries. I go on to explore fiction’s capacities to resist these articulations and to affect the real, and the capacities in Alexis Wright’s The Swan Book, and Janette Turner Hospital’s The Last Magician to cultivate readers’ sense of cities as constantly varying, permeable assemblages, rather than as constantly improving, coherent, stable, secure organisms. These novels expand readers’ abilities to transform urban imaginaries and make cities differently.'  (Publication abstract)

Australian Authors in Place : 21st Century Maps and Gaps, Toby Davidson , Donna Houston , single work criticism

'In 2015 [author website] was launched by literature, geography, media and culture researchers [withheld]. It combines field research with Google Maps technology to reveal, for the first time, the spread of old and new commemorative sites of Australian literature in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra. Previous maps, such as Monument Australia and the Cultural Atlas of Australia, have not included sites of literary commemoration. [author website] contributes to an emergent field of international scholarship within the humanities interested space, place and the geo and digital humanities.  The project provides a fresh basis for comparative scholarship with international literary maps and placemaking – including, for example, Franco Moretti’s Atlas of the European Novel 1800-1900 (1998) to David Cooper et al’s Literary Mapping in the Digital Age (2016). '   (Publication abstract) 

Farm Novel or Station Romance? The Geraldton Novels of Randolph Stow, Tony Hughes-d'Aeth , single work criticism

'Critical interpretations of Randolph Stow's works have been inclined to see them as studies of alienation.  This essay addresses the material basis for the novels that Stow set in the Geraldton hinterland, namely A Haunted Land (1956), The Bystander (1957), and Merry-Go-Round in the Sea (1965).  Against the metaphysical and postcolonial readings of Stow's work, this essay posits an alienation that stems from a change in agricultural mode from pastoral to farming.'  (Publication abstract)

‘Chatter about Harriet’ : Randolph Stow’s Place-making and 'The Suburbs of Hell', Kate Noske , single work criticism

'Randolph Stow’s ‘English’ novels, The Girl Green as Elderflower (1980) and The Suburbs of Hell (1984) offer complex representations of space in text, which layer narrative and memory each over the other to inform the known setting. The resulting conceptualisation of place holds at its centre a transnational fluidity, which, when combined with the overt textual links between the stories and Stow’s own life, suggests a unique practice of place-making within his writing as an oeuvre. Reading Stow’s The Suburbs of Hell along these lines suggests it has a greater connection to a more general consideration of Australian narratives of place that might be assumed given its English setting. But what is specifically functioning within Stow’s writing practice to create places which embody this transnational mutability? This paper will examine Stow’s practice in writing for the purpose of understanding the manner in which the text constructs its setting, and whether or not reading these connections between Stow’s life and the text are productive of a cognizance of place-making in terms of writing practice.'  (Publication abstract)

Murray-Mallee Imaginaries : Towards a Literary History of a Region, Emily Potter , Brigid Magner , single work criticism

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

Australian Literature and Place-Making Emily Potter , Brigid Magner , 2018 single work criticism
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 1 no. 18 2018;

'This special issue showcases the diverse ways in which Australian literature and place-making are brought together in contemporary literary scholarship. The seven essays, as well as the creative work by artist and scholar Ross Gibson, illuminate place as intimately constituted by narrative practice, and reflexively, show how geographies and environments inform literary forms, modes and, to use Jennifer Hamilton’s productive term, ‘tones.’ Poetics and placemaking are closely bound. This is of particular consequence in our national context, where ongoing cultures of colonisation, and the political potential of decolonising practices, are both enabled by the kinds of stories we tell both about and through our occupation of place. Storytelling is never neutral, nor is it dematerial. It is always, profoundly, active and has effects on the composition of the world; it is also collaborative, and not always with other human actors. Thinking about a potentially decolonised place requires an interrogation of what enables the enduring capacity of space to exclude and dispossess. It means understanding how words ‘do’ work. The essays included here understand this work in a range of ways and through distinct frames.' (1)

Australian Literature and Place-Making Emily Potter , Brigid Magner , 2018 single work criticism
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 1 no. 18 2018;

'This special issue showcases the diverse ways in which Australian literature and place-making are brought together in contemporary literary scholarship. The seven essays, as well as the creative work by artist and scholar Ross Gibson, illuminate place as intimately constituted by narrative practice, and reflexively, show how geographies and environments inform literary forms, modes and, to use Jennifer Hamilton’s productive term, ‘tones.’ Poetics and placemaking are closely bound. This is of particular consequence in our national context, where ongoing cultures of colonisation, and the political potential of decolonising practices, are both enabled by the kinds of stories we tell both about and through our occupation of place. Storytelling is never neutral, nor is it dematerial. It is always, profoundly, active and has effects on the composition of the world; it is also collaborative, and not always with other human actors. Thinking about a potentially decolonised place requires an interrogation of what enables the enduring capacity of space to exclude and dispossess. It means understanding how words ‘do’ work. The essays included here understand this work in a range of ways and through distinct frames.' (1)

Last amended 21 Sep 2018 10:45:22
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