'Alex Miller: The Ruin of Time is the first sole-authored critical survey of the respected Australian novelist's eleven novels. While these books are immediately accessible to the general reading public, they are manifestly works of high literary seriousness - substantial, technically masterful and assured, intricately interconnected, and of great imaginative, intellectual and ethical weight.
Among his many prizes and awards, Alex Miller has twice won the Miles Franklin Literary Award, for The Ancestor Game in 1993, and Journey to the Stone Country in 2003; the Commonwealth Writers' prize, also for The Ancestor Game in 1993; and the New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards Christina Stead Prize, for Conditions of Faith in 2001 and Lovesong in 2011. He received a Centenary Medal in 2001 and the Melbourne Prize for Literature in 2012. In 2011 he was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. Having published his eleventh novel, Coal Creek, in 2013 - which won the Victorian Premier's Fiction Award in 2014 - Miller is currently writing an autobiographical memoir with the working title 'Horizons'.' (Publication summary)Sydney : University of Sydney , 2014
'Shirley Hazzard: New Critical Essays is the first collection of scholarly essays on the work of the acclaimed Australian-born, New York-based author. In the course of the last half century, Hazzard's writing has crossed and re-crossed the terrain of love, war, beauty, politics and ethics.
'Hazzard's oeuvre effortlessly reflects and represents the author's life and times, encapsulating the prominent feelings, anxieties and questions of the second half of the 20th century. It is these qualities, along with Hazzard's lyrical style that place her among the most noteworthy Australian writers of the 20th century.
'Hazzard's work has been duly praised and admired by many including the critic Bryan Appleyard who describes her as 'the greatest living writer on goodness and love'. In 2011, novelist Richard Ford observed: 'If there has to be one best writer working in English today it's Shirley Hazzard.'
'Shirley Hazzard received the US National Book Award in 2003 for The Great Fire, which also won the William Dean Howells Medal in the US and the Miles Franklin Award in Australia. In 1980 she won the National Book Critics Circle Award for The Transit of Venus, and in 1977 the O. Henry Short Story Award, and she has been shortlisted for the Orange Prize and the Man Booker Prize. She is a fellow of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and the British Royal Society of Literature, and an Honorary Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities' (Publication summary)Sydney : University of Sydney , 2014
'Australia has been seen as a land of both punishment and refuge. Australian literature has explored these controlling alternatives, and vividly rendered the landscape on which they transpire. Twentieth-century writers left Australia to see the world; now Australia’s distance no longer provides sanctuary. But today the global perspective has arrived with a vengeance.
'In Contemporary Australian Literature: A World Not Yet Dead, Nicholas Birns tells the story of how novelists, poets and critics, from Patrick White to Hannah Kent, from Alexis Wright to Christos Tsiolkas, responded to this condition. With rancour, concern and idealism, modern Australian literature conveys a tragic sense of the past yet an abiding vision of the way forward.
'Birns paints a vivid picture of a rich Australian literary voice – one not lost to the churning of global markets, but in fact given new life by it. Contrary to the despairing of the critics, Australian literary identity continues to flourish. And as Birns finds, it is not one thing, but many.' (Publication summary)Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2015
'In The Fiction of Tim Winton, Lyn McCredden explores the eleven novels and four short story collections of an author whose works span the literary and popular divide. Throughout this work, McCredden shows Winton to be a writer of fearless and intelligent fiction, tackling themes such as belonging, gender, and redemption, all while sustaining a strong mainstream following.
Winton’s work spans many genres, ranging from children’s literature to theatrical plays to a suite of highly influential literary novels. Among many other awards, Winton has won the Miles Franklin Award a record four times, with Shallows in 1984, Cloudstreet in 1992, Dirt Music in 2002, and Breath in 2009. Dirt Music was also shortlisted for the Booker Prize in the same year, with his novel The Riders shortlisted for the 1995 Booker Prize. Along with a host of other literary prizes, including the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in 1995 and both the New South Wales Premier’s and Queensland Premier’s Awards for The Turning, Winton is regarded as one of Australia’s most popular writers; his novel Cloudstreet has regularly been voted Australia’s Favourite Book by the ABC and the Australian Society of Authors. Cloudstreet has also achieved international success, and a theatrical adaption has toured the world to critical acclaim and adulation.' (Publication summary)Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2017
'Over the course of the nineteenth century a remarkable array of types appeared – and disappeared – in Australian literature: the swagman, the larrikin, the colonial detective, the bushranger, the “currency lass”, the squatter, and more. Some had a powerful influence on the colonies’ developing sense of identity; others were more ephemeral. But all had a role to play in shaping and reflecting the social and economic circumstances of life in the colonies.
'In Colonial Australian Fiction: Character Types, Social Formations and the Colonial Economy, Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver explore the genres in which these characters flourished: the squatter novel, the bushranger adventure, colonial detective stories, the swagman’s yarn, the Australian girl’s romance. Authors as diverse as Catherine Helen Spence, Rosa Praed, Henry Kingsley, Anthony Trollope, Henry Lawson, Miles Franklin, Barbara Baynton, Rolf Boldrewood, Mary Fortune and Marcus Clarke were fascinated by colonial character types, and brought them vibrantly to life.
'As this book shows, colonial Australian character types are fluid, contradictory and often unpredictable. When we look closely, they have the potential to challenge our assumptions about fiction, genre and national identity.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2017
'In 2014, four decades after it was written, Elizabeth Harrower's novel In Certain Circles was published to much anticipation. In 1971, it had been withdrawn by the author shortly before its planned publication. The novel's rediscovery sparked a revival of international interest in Harrower's work, with the republication of her previous novels and, in 2015, the appearance of her first new work in nearly four decades.
'Elizabeth Harrower: Critical Essays is the first collection of critical writing on Harrower's fiction. It includes eloquent tributes by two acclaimed contemporary novelists, Michelle de Kretser and Fiona McFarlane, and essays by leading critics of Australian literature. They consider Harrower's treatment of time and place; her depiction of women, men, and their interactions in the mid twentieth century; her engagement with world history; and her nimble, complex, profoundly modern approach to plot, character and genre. Together they offer new insights into a writer at the crossroads of modernism and postmodernism, and invite readers to read and re-read Harrower's work in a new light.' (Publication summary)Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2017
'Australian Books and Authors in the American Marketplace 1840s—1940s explores how Australian writers and their works were present in the United States before the mid twentieth century to a much greater degree than previously acknowledged. Drawing on fresh archival research and combining the approaches of literary criticism, print culture studies and book history, David Carter and Roger Osborne demonstrate that Australian writing was transnational long before the contemporary period. In mapping Australian literature’s connections to British and US markets, their research challenges established understandings of national, imperial and world literatures.
Carter and Osborne examine how Australian authors, editors and publishers engaged productively with their American counterparts, and how American readers and reviewers responded to Australian works. They consider the role played by British publishers and agents in taking Australian writing to America, and how the international circulation of new literary genres created new opportunities for novelists to move between markets.
Some of these writers, such as Christina Stead and Patrick White, remain household names; others who once enjoyed international fame, such as Dale Collins and Alice Grant Rosman, have been largely forgotten. The story of their books in America reveals how culture, commerce and copyright law interacted to create both opportunities and obstacles for Australian writers.' (Source: Publisher's blurb)Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2018
'Although Christina Stead is best known for the mid-century masterpiece set in Washington D.C. and Baltimore, The Man Who Loved Children, it was not her only work about the America. Five of Christina Stead’s mid-career novels deal with the United States, capturing and critiquing American life with characteristic sharpness and originality.
'In this examination of Stead’s American work, Fiona Morrison explores Stead’s profound engagement with American politics and culture and their influence on her “restlessly experimental” style. Through the turbulent political and artistic debates of the 1930s, the Second World War, and the emergence of McCarthyism, the “matter” of America provoked Stead to continue to create new ways of writing about politics, gender and modernity.
'This is the first critical study to focus on Stead’s time in America and its influence on her writing. Morrison argues compellingly that Stead’s American novels “reveal the work of the greatest political woman writer of the mid twentieth century”, and that Stead’s account of American ideology and national identity remains extraordinarily prescient, even today.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2019
'Gail Jones: Word, Image, Ethics is an accessible guide to the writings of Gail Jones, the award-winning Australian author, essayist and academic.
'Drawing together ideas from literature, art, philosophy and photography, the volume presents a compelling analysis of Jones’ literary commitment to the political and the personal, and reflects on how and why we interpret literary texts.
'An essential contribution to the intersecting fields of Australian studies and international literature, Gail Jones: Word, Image, Ethics offers innovative insights into the writing of one of Australia’s most accomplished authors.' (Publication summary)Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2020