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y separately published work icon Archival-Poetics selected work   poetry  
Alternative title: Colonial Archive : Archival-Poetics
Issue Details: First known date: 2019... 2019 Archival-Poetics
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Archival-Poetics offers a unique contribution to Australian poetry through a new way to write into, and out from, the State’s Aboriginal archives and from a Narungga woman’s standpoint. It will demonstrate an embodied reckoning with the colonial archive and those traumatic, contested and buried episodes of history that inevitably return to haunt. Family records at the heart of this work include South Australia’s Aboriginal Protection Board and Children’s Welfare Board records, highlighting assimilation policy measures targeting Aboriginal girls for removal into indenture domestic labour. Three interconnected threads underpin this Archival-poetic writing, and each thread is expanded as the theoretical heart to each section of the work: On Blood Memory – a reclamation of re-imagined histories through cultural identity (blood), narrative (memory) and connection to country (land); On Haunting as a ‘way of knowing’ – an active and honouring response to that which is silent and hidden; the seething and felt, yet unseen presence of colonial violence or unfinished business; On the Colonial Archive – a poetic spotlight on the colonial State and those key institutions, repositories and systems that maintain and perpetuate dominant discourses and representations on Indigenous peoples and histories. Each section of the work will be a potent, multi-textual artefact in its own right that centres the affective, transformative and honouring dimensions of haunting, where the potency of place, colonial-histories and blood-memory collide. They each bear witness to the state’s archivisation processes and the revelation of what is both absent and present on the record. As a trilogy offering in one volume of work, it collectively considers important questions of representation, surveillance and agency; and questions of power that resonate in our daily lives, on and through the colonial archive. It also bears witness to individual and collective loss in order to actively honour and contribute, beyond the local, to larger counter-hegemonic narratives of colonial history. This work demonstrates a critical-creative way of decolonising and transforming the colonial archive through poetic refusal, resistance and memory-making; a poetry that also engages theory, images and primary source archival material.'

Notes

  • Three chapbooks presented as a single publication with a single ISBN: On Blood Memory, On Haunting, and On the Colonial Archive.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Sydney, New South Wales,: Vagabond Press , 2019 .
      image of person or book cover 1746663871510632033.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 38p., 42p., 32p. (112p.)p.
      Edition info: 3 chapbooks in slipcase
      Description: illus.
      Note/s:
      • Published 1 May 2019.

      ISBN: 9781925735215

Works about this Work

Gabriela Bourke Reviews Archival Poetics by Natalie Harkin Gabriela Bourke , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , August no. 25 2020;

— Review of Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry

'It can be tempting to imagine that colonisation is a thing of the past; that posting an infographic on Instagram on Sorry Day counts as activism; that the horrors white settlers inflicted on First Nations peoples can be considered in the past tense. Natalie Harkin’s Archival Poetics reminds us that colonisation is ongoing and that far from fading away, the savagery of colonial oppression remains constant in our communities and our culture.' (Introduction)

A Deep Archive : the Docupoetry of Jeanine Leane & Natalie Harkin : Mark Prendergast Reviews ‘Walk Back Over’ by Jeanine Leane and ‘Archival-Poetics’ by Natalie Harkin. Mark Prendergast , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Rochford Street Review , no. 28 2020;

— Review of Walk Back Over Jeanine Leane , 2018 selected work poetry ; Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry
Close Reading the Colonial Archive Susie Anderson , 2019 single work column
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , November 2019;

'It’s described as haunting. And I know it well.

'Led by our relatives, our ancestors, we do feverish work, memory work, detective work. But the compulsion is not just to fill in gaps. Doesn’t just stop at the finding.'  (Introduction)

Disrupting the Colonial Archive Nathan Sentance , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , September 2019;

— Review of Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry

'Most people think of archives, especially big government archives, as either neutral sites of memory and history, or as mundane, boring storage facilities for administrative records, or they don’t think about them at all. But the poet Dr Natalie Harkin (Narungga) knows what many First Nations people know, that official archives are a powerful colonial weapon as well as a site of mourning. They are time capsules and they are also bullets. Created by state-sanctioned surveillance and violence, these archives have the power to sustain and reproduce that same violence. As Harkin says, there is ‘blood on the records’.' (Introduction)

Disrupting the Colonial Archive Nathan Sentance , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , September 2019;

— Review of Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry

'Most people think of archives, especially big government archives, as either neutral sites of memory and history, or as mundane, boring storage facilities for administrative records, or they don’t think about them at all. But the poet Dr Natalie Harkin (Narungga) knows what many First Nations people know, that official archives are a powerful colonial weapon as well as a site of mourning. They are time capsules and they are also bullets. Created by state-sanctioned surveillance and violence, these archives have the power to sustain and reproduce that same violence. As Harkin says, there is ‘blood on the records’.' (Introduction)

A Deep Archive : the Docupoetry of Jeanine Leane & Natalie Harkin : Mark Prendergast Reviews ‘Walk Back Over’ by Jeanine Leane and ‘Archival-Poetics’ by Natalie Harkin. Mark Prendergast , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Rochford Street Review , no. 28 2020;

— Review of Walk Back Over Jeanine Leane , 2018 selected work poetry ; Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry
Gabriela Bourke Reviews Archival Poetics by Natalie Harkin Gabriela Bourke , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , August no. 25 2020;

— Review of Archival-Poetics Natalie Harkin , 2019 selected work poetry

'It can be tempting to imagine that colonisation is a thing of the past; that posting an infographic on Instagram on Sorry Day counts as activism; that the horrors white settlers inflicted on First Nations peoples can be considered in the past tense. Natalie Harkin’s Archival Poetics reminds us that colonisation is ongoing and that far from fading away, the savagery of colonial oppression remains constant in our communities and our culture.' (Introduction)

Close Reading the Colonial Archive Susie Anderson , 2019 single work column
— Appears in: Overland [Online] , November 2019;

'It’s described as haunting. And I know it well.

'Led by our relatives, our ancestors, we do feverish work, memory work, detective work. But the compulsion is not just to fill in gaps. Doesn’t just stop at the finding.'  (Introduction)

Last amended 17 Dec 2020 10:17:23
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