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y separately published work icon Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia multi chapter work   criticism   poetry   prose   biography  
Issue Details: First known date: 2019... 2019 Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Australian deserts remain dotted with the ruins of old mosques. Beginning with a Bengali poetry collection discovered in a nineteenth-century mosque in the town of Broken Hill, Samia Khatun weaves together the stories of various peoples colonised by the British Empire to chart a history of South Asian diaspora.

'Australianama (The Book of Australia) composes a history of Muslims in Australia through Sufi poetry, Urdu travel tales, Persian dream texts and Arabic concepts, as well as Wangkangurru song-poetry, Arabunna women's stories and Kuyani histories, leading readers through the rich worlds of non-white peoples that are missing from historical records. Khatun challenges a central idea that powerfully shapes history books across the Anglophone world- that European knowledge traditions are superior to the epistemologies of the colonised. Arguing that Aboriginal and South Asian language sources are keys to the vast, complex libraries that belie colonised geographies, Australianama shows that stories in colonised tongues can transform the very ground from which we view past, present and future.' (Introduction)

Notes

  • Epigraph:

    Wild Flowers

    Mallets pound fence posts
    in tune with the rifles
    to mask massacre sites

    Cattle will graze
    sheep hooves will scatter
    children's bones

    Wildflowers will not grow
    where the bone powder
    lies

    -Ali Cobby Eckermann

    Kami, 2010

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

Review : Australianama: The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Tony Hughes-d'Aeth , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Humanities Review , December no. 67 2020;

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography
Samia Khatun Offers New Pathways to the Past Heather Goodall , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: History Australia , vol. 16 no. 3 2019; (p. 583-585)

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography

'This is a compelling book, not only because of its lucid prose and deep research, but because of the intensely personal story threaded through its pages.' (Introduction)

Samia Khatun : Australianama Justine Hyde , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Paper , 24-30 August 2019;

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography

'Bangladeshi Australian author Samia Khatun’s Australianama is a book of books, a survey of divergent modes of historical storytelling, and a search for truth in the face of cultural erasure. It opens with Khatun visiting her mother, Eshrat, in a mental health ward in Sydney’s suburbs. Plagued with terrifying visions in Bengali, Eshrat is locked each night in a shared room with a uniformed Australian soldier – recently returned from Afghanistan – who she believes will murder her in her sleep. With the hospital refusing to relocate her mother, Khatun comprehends an irresolvable dissonance: “Western states cannot bomb, exploit, drone, invade and kill South Asians andhave us as part of their citizenry at the same time.” She laments, “The migrant story I had inhabited for much of my life buckled, and eventually collapsed.” This acts as the catalyst for Khatun’s expansive history of the South Asian diaspora in colonial Australia.' (Introduction)

Samia Khatun : Australianama Justine Hyde , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Paper , 24-30 August 2019;

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography

'Bangladeshi Australian author Samia Khatun’s Australianama is a book of books, a survey of divergent modes of historical storytelling, and a search for truth in the face of cultural erasure. It opens with Khatun visiting her mother, Eshrat, in a mental health ward in Sydney’s suburbs. Plagued with terrifying visions in Bengali, Eshrat is locked each night in a shared room with a uniformed Australian soldier – recently returned from Afghanistan – who she believes will murder her in her sleep. With the hospital refusing to relocate her mother, Khatun comprehends an irresolvable dissonance: “Western states cannot bomb, exploit, drone, invade and kill South Asians andhave us as part of their citizenry at the same time.” She laments, “The migrant story I had inhabited for much of my life buckled, and eventually collapsed.” This acts as the catalyst for Khatun’s expansive history of the South Asian diaspora in colonial Australia.' (Introduction)

Samia Khatun Offers New Pathways to the Past Heather Goodall , 2019 single work review
— Appears in: History Australia , vol. 16 no. 3 2019; (p. 583-585)

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography

'This is a compelling book, not only because of its lucid prose and deep research, but because of the intensely personal story threaded through its pages.' (Introduction)

Review : Australianama: The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Tony Hughes-d'Aeth , 2020 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Humanities Review , December no. 67 2020;

— Review of Australianama : The South Asian Odyssey in Australia Samia Khatun , 2019 multi chapter work criticism poetry prose biography
Last amended 4 Sep 2020 13:36:18
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