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Issue Details: First known date: 2014... 2014 Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'This volume marks the birth centenary of a giant amongst contemporary writers: the Australian Nobel prize-winning novelist, Patrick White (1912–1990). It proffers an invaluable insight into the current state of White studies through commentaries drawn from an international galaxy of eminent critics, as well as from newer talents. The book proves that interest in White’s work continues to grow and diversify.

'Every essay offers a new insight: some are re-evaluations by seasoned critics who revise earlier positions significantly; others admit new light onto what has seemed like well-trodden terrain or focus on works perhaps undervalued in the past—his poetry, an early short story or novel—which are now subjected to fresh attention. His posthumous work has also won attention from prominent critics. New comparisons with other international writers have been drawn in terms of subject matter, themes and philosophy.

'The expansion of critical attention into fields like photography and film opens new possibilities for enhancing further appreciation of his work. White’s interest in public issues such as the treatment of Australia’s Indigenous peoples, human rights and Australian nationalism is refracted through the inclusion of relevant commentaries from notable contributors.

'For the first time in Australian literary history, Indigenous scholars have participated in a celebration of the work of a white Australian writer. All of this highlights a new direction in White studies – the appreciation of his stature as a public intellectual. The book demonstrates that White’s legacy has limitless possibilities for further growth.' (Publisher's abstract)

Notes

  • Book launched in Canberra at University House, Australian National University, by the Hon. Gareth Evans, 2 October 2014.
  • Content indexing in process.

Contents

* Contents derived from the Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland,
c
England,
c
c
United Kingdom (UK),
c
Western Europe, Europe,
:
Cambridge Scholars Press , 2014 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Introduction, Cynthia Van Den Driesen , 2014 single work criticism
'White is known to have speculated, at times, as to whether his works would be read after his death. That his reputation is in no danger of fading is surely attested by this birth centenary publication – the outcome of a conference held in India in December, 2012. It was attended by some of the best-known of White scholars as well as some excellent new contributors from all over the world; the latter being a promising augury for the future. White had an awareness of Indian culture, though it was his wide acquaintance with European culture that saturated his work, along with his deep roots in his native Australia. Perhaps it needs to be stated here that the epigraph to White’s earliest novel, Happy Valley (1939) was a quotation from Gandhi; and his earliest published short story, “The Twitching Colonel” (1937) records the experience of a retired British colonel who is literally consumed, it would appear, by what he has experienced in India.' (Introduction)
(p. xiii)
Australia’s Prodigal Son, John Barnes , 2014 single work criticism
'Meeting Patrick White, July 1988. In his later years Patrick White, with his black beret and walking stick, became a familiar, easily recognisable public figure. I did not need anyone to explain who he was when I met him on the grounds of La Trobe University one afternoon in July, 1988. He had come to the Bundoora campus to give, what proved to be, his last public speech. It was his second visit to the university: in 1984 he had given a very successful lunchtime talk supporting the newly fonned Nuclear Disarmament Party. This time he was speaking in the evening, giving the final talk in a series named after Ben Meredith, the first Master of Menzies College. I had been invited to chair his talk and to join the small group who were to dine with him at the college beforehand. ' (Introduction)
(p. 2-21)
Horizons of Hope, Bill Ashcroft , 2014 single work criticism

'There is no clearer demonstration of the fact that reading is a social and historical act than the reception of Patrick White. The relationship between reader and writer, or reader and text, is never innocent, but reflects the social concerns of the time. With literature and literary analysis, it also reflects the concerns dominating the institutions of literary criticism. White's work entered Australian literary culture at a time when the country was experiencing a post-war nationalist resurgence, leading up to the establishment of a chair of Australian literature at Sydney University — the first such chair, and the belated recognition that Australia did have a literature, and, indeed, was experiencing a birth into respectability —just as hunger for an Australia literature of world stature was growing.

' (Introduction)

(p. 22-42)
“Splintering and Coalescing” : Language and the Sacred in Patrick White’s Novels, Lyn McCredden , 2014 single work criticism
‘In the years directly after World War Two, novelist Patrick White confronted a series of thresholds. Each one would take him further into his vocation as a writer of astounding, dense, haunting novels. The young Patrick White did not, of course, know this at the time. He first needed to cross the world, returning from his beloved London to become an Australian again. He had to begin writing about Australia, about being Australian, but not just this. He began to seek ways of writing about how meaning is made, in Australia and beyond; and how meaning is made alone, and in community. This struggle to make and unmake meaning, it will be argued, is a languaged, sacred struggle. ’ (Introduction)
(p. 43-62)
Incorporating the Physical Corporeality, Abjection and the Role of Laura Trevelyan in Voss, Bridget Grogan , 2014 single work criticism
‘This essay argues that corporeality forms the focus of a close narrative attention and is ultimately granted a redemptive significance in Patrick White's fiction. The argument therefore opposes the opinions of critics who, at the height of critical interest in White's writing during the 1970s and 1980s, identified White's attention to the body as a sign of radical disgust and thus of a defining dualism that posits the 'purity' of the disembodied spirit in relation to the 'pollution' of the material world. Brian Kiernan, for example, read White's writing as presenting "the soul imprisoned in the corrupting flesh." (1976, 462) For Ron Shepherd, White's novels suggested that the "physical world and bodily existence" is a "facade which must be pierced by the deeper mind in order to arrive at a better understanding." (1978, 29) A.P. Riemer claimed that White's writing is "dedicated to the notion that the body, the flesh and the senses are utterly worthless." (1980, 26) ’ (Introduction)
(p. 63-81)
Patrick White : Crossing the Boundaries, John McLaren , 2014 single work criticism
‘Australian history is a history of division. Lacking territorial borders to be defended against hostile peoples, we have made our own inner borders of class, gender and ethnicity. Without barriers of place, we have constructed divisions between city and country, Sydney and the bush, male and female, foreigners and native born, workers and masters. We have ruthlessly dispossessed the first peoples of this land and then attempted to confine them within the walls of reservations consigning them also to cultural and material deprivation. Besides these divisions there has been a further perceived division between the land and its European settlers. A constant theme in Australian fiction has been the attempt to find national narratives that will resolve these divisions. Henry Handel Richardson's The Fortunes of Richard Mahony (1930) is a tragedy of border-crossings that leaves its central protagonist alienated both from old country and new. ’ (Introduction)
(p. 82-97)
The Myth of Patrick White’s Anti-Suburbanism, Nathanael O'Reilly , 2014 single work criticism
‘Any detailed examination of suburbia in the Australian novel must address the work of White, who published two novels in the 1960s that arc widely considered classic examples of anti-suburbanism in Australian literature: Riders in the Chariot (1961) and The Solid Mandala (1966). This essay is based broadly on my research for my recent book regarding Patrick White's engagement with suburbia: Exploring Suburbia: The Suburbs in the Contemporary Australian Novel (2012). However, where the book focuses on The Solid Mandala, in this chapter, the focus is solely on Riders in the Chariot. The invitation to present this segment at the Conference enabled me to test my research directly on an international group of specialists in White studies through this discussion. (The book itself was also launched in India, at the Centenary conference in I lydcrabad in November 2012). ’ (Introduction)
(p. 98-109)
Patrick White : The Quest of the Artist, Satendra Nandan , 2014 single work criticism
‘One of the epigraphs to The Vivisector is a quotation from the English painter Ben Nicholson. It expresses a major theme in White's fiction for it expresses the idea that both the artist and the mystic arc searching for "the understanding and realisation of infinity." Several of White's characters attempt to reach or reveal the Infinite in their lived lives or artistic creations. Even in his first published short story, "The Twitching Colonel", there are suggestions of a yearning for a self beyond the conscious self. The Colonel longs to transcend the ephemeral: "I shall strip myself of the onion-folds of prejudice, till standing naked though conscious I sec myself complete or else be consumed like the Hindu conjurer who is translated into space." (TC. 602-609) Theodora Goodman in The Aunt's Story reaches a heightened awareness where "light and silence ate into the hard, resisting barriers of reason, hinting at some ultimate moment of clear vision" (VIV. 290). Stan Parker's lifetime search in The Tree of Man ends with a vision "that One, and no other figure, is the answer to all sums." (TM. 497) Voss believes that in this "disturbing country" ... it is possible more easily to discard the inessential and to attempt the infinite." (V. 38) ’ (Introduction)
(p. 110-124)
Patrick White and Australia : Perspective of an Outsider, Pavithra Narayanan , 2014 single work criticism
'Reflecting, however briefly, on the state of the world in this year of Patrick White's birth centenary (2012), his view that, "we live in black times," rings more true than ever. There is not a single country unaffected by neoliberal economic globalisation and imperialism. Some regions of the world seem to live in a state of perpetual war. If technological advancements and economic mobility have enabled greater international and global interactions, they have also intensified parochial nationalisms and gross inequities between nations and between people within a single nation. Immigration is a contentious issue, the gap between the rich and the poor continues to widen, governments arc openly influenced by corporations, there is increasing gloom about rising costs, unemployment, and lack of housing and healthcare even in the more prosperous nations of the western world.' (Introduction)
(p. 125-140)
Inscribing Landscapes in Patrick White’s Novels, Jessica White , 2014 single work criticism
‘I grew up on a property in northwest New South Wales, which was once owned by Ivy Voss of Hughenden. Ivy married Frederick George White, who was Patrick White's uncle and my great-grandfather. While Patrick was at school, he sometimes stayed with Ivy and George at Mittabah in the NSW Southern Highlands. He didn't like Ivy much, as David Marr writes: "The boy thought she was a monster. Her maiden name was Voss, and he kept the name in mind, waiting for thirty years to revenge himself' (1992, 59) with, the novel Voss. ’ (Introduction)
(p. 141-152)
“A Glorious, Terrible Life” : The Dual Image in Patrick White’s Dramatic Language, May-Brit Akerholt , 2014 single work criticism
‘I am very familiar with the plays of Henrik Ibsen, both from my Norwegian upbringing and from a thesis I wrote, some years ago at Macquarie University. I always thought that one of the most innovative (and most misunderstood) aspects of Ibsen's work was the way he juxtaposed opposite forces and forms, creating a co-existence of tragedy and comedy, exploring several levels of action and characterisation simultaneously — and very differently — from a number of writers such as possibly the greatest dramatist of all, Shakespeare. Then I started researching the drama of Patrick White, for yet another thesis. As I was working, I began to realise that White and Ibsen both combine portrayals of the darker side of life but combined this with comedic elements.’ (Introduction)
(p. 152-163)
Looking at Patrick White Looking : Portraits in Paint and on Film, Greg Battye , 2014 single work criticism
‘In a lecture on portraiture given at Australia's National Portrait Gallery and broadcast on ABC Radio National (Maleuvre 20l0b), Didier Maleuvre offered the view that photography "cannot yield a portrait" and that "late 20th century portraiture enlisted photography in part to undermine the human face, to depersonalise it." In terms of both art history and mediated representation, Maleuvre knows whereof he speaks: he is Professor of French and Comparative Literature at the University of California Santa Barbara, and affiliated with the University's Centre for Film, Television and New Media — in which capacity we can presume that he is not broadly hostile to photography in general. He is the author of several major books and numerous journal articles on art and art history, including The Religion of Reality: Inquiry into the Self Art, and Transcendence (2006), which "deals with the two forces in modern culture that command the centrality and force of religion: the self, on the one hand, and art, on the other." (Maleuvre 2006, I) That book is underscored throughout by Maleuvre's concern that "scientific rationalisation has purged the world of mystery and ... flushed the very idea of the mysterious from knowledge and understanding." (Maleuvre 2006, 2) In respect of art at least, it seems that he would like to put some of that mystery back’ (Introduction)
(p. 164-180)
Patrick White-Lite : Fred Schepisi’s Filmic Adaptation of The Eye of the Storm, Sissy Helff , 2014 single work criticism
‘Fred Schepisi's film, The Eye of the Storm is set in the insular cultural landscape of Sydney's suburbs around Centennial Park of the 1970s. Just as in its literary source text, tempests erode textual, visual, temporal and societal facades. The film tells the life-story of the wealthy, but now frail and aged matriarch Elizabeth Hunter (Charlotte Rampling). This mother has asked her two adult children, Basil Hunter (Geoffrey Rush) and 'Princess de Lascabanes' aka Dorothy (Judy Davis) to return from Europe in order to spend time by her bedside in these final days. This reunion highlights salient family tensions and arouses suppressed and unsettling memories.’ (Introduction)
(p. 181-195)
The Novelist as Occasional Poet : Patrick White and Katharine Susannah Prichard, Glen Phillips , 2014 single work criticism
‘Few novelists are appreciated as much for their poetry as for their novels. Perhaps Thomas Hardy and D H Lawrence are among the rare exceptions. Some novelists go so far as to order the destruction of their poetry manuscripts, especially if classifiable as mainly juvenilia. I imagine that, as many novelists have done, writing occasional poems in one's youth is a good deal less taxing than the laborious penning of several early novels in draft form. Early `prentice' works such as these are frequently shredded or burned by novelists when their reputations have been established in the course of their developing careers. In many cases early experimental works are 'raided' by the novelist in later life, Patrick White, when it came to his oeuvre, rarely referred to his early work in poetry; neither indeed have his critics. No such reticence existed on the part of Katharine Susannah Prichard or on the part of the enthusiasts of her work. The more significant of her slim volumes of poems, The Earth Lover, was published in 1932 only three years before White's own second small volume, The Ploughman and Other Poems (1935).’ (Introduction)
(p. 196-209)
In the Shadow of Patrick White, Meira Chand , 2014 single work criticism
‘This discussion is not intended to be an academic literary analysis of Patrick White's work; rather, it is more the record of a journey of my own (being also a writer by profession) in the shadow of Patrick White: a series of reflections made in considering aspects of a narrative of my own and observing his handling of a not dissimilar work composed by White.’ (Introduction)
(p. 210-221)
The Spirit of the Creative Word in Patrick White’s Voss, Antonella Riem Natale , 2014 single work criticism

'Preamble: This paper originates from an interdisciplinary non-binary critical approach, which applies Riane Eisler's (1987) partnership model to World literary texts. By analysing the works of authors writing in the varieties of English, including those of Indigenous populations where the dynamics at work are caring and sharing rather than exploiting and dominating, the coloniser's word is explored in its creative potential to transform the dominator values of colonisation and globalisation into cooperative and partnership codes. More specifically, as Raimon Panikkar points out, the modem degeneration of 'the word', stripped of its dialogical power and reduced to a mere term, has a devastating effect, for it becomes a simple transferring of notions, devoid of a deeper meaning. (Panikkar 2007)

'The creative word operates within a co-operative system of values that differs from the dominator model, which is tied to the Westernised scientistic and technical term. In this discussion, Eisler's partnership/dominator continuum along with Panikkar's theory of the spirit of the word will be applied in order to focus on the power of the mythical and archetypal word of the Aboriginal guides Dugald and Jackie in Voss. Here 'the word' is seen giving expression to a multitude of Aboriginal oral traditions, narratives and myths operating within analogical frameworks, rather than logical ones, and including silence as a form of creativity and communication, thus manifesting its full symbolic and poetic power as expression of a partnership approach to life. ' (Introduction)

(p. 222-240)
“Violent” Aboriginals and “Benign” White Men : White’s Alternative Representation of the Encounter in Voss, Harish C. Mehta , 2014 single work criticism
'White published his fifth novel, Voss, in 1957, a time when the White Australia Policy was being relaxed ahead of its eventual abolition in 1966. It was a significant historical moment for the novel to make an appearance because it historicized the encounter between whites and aboriginals. The clash between European explorers and the aboriginal people of Australia must properly be viewed as a form of early exploratory diplomacy between colonialists who aimed to “discover” an imagined homeland, on the one hand, and the pre-existing nations of the indigenous people, on the other. As Johann Ulrich Voss, the protagonist in the novel Voss, sets out to “explore” the continent in 1845, his contact with aboriginal communities constitutes a form of informal diplomacy, or unofficial amateur diplomacy—i.e. the diplomacy conducted by ordinary people. By contrast, formal diplomacy is conducted by countries, as understood in Diplomatic History and International Relations History. There is rich historical literature on informal diplomacy and early contacts between white settlers and aboriginals, both in North America and Australia, many of which resulted in the signing of treaties and informal pacts (Ford 2010, Berman and Johnson 1977, Forslund 2002, and Beisner 1975). '
(p. 241-256)
White’s Tribe : Patrick White’s Representation of the Australian Aborigine in A Fringe of Leaves, Jeanine Leane , 2014 single work criticism
'Jeanine Leane’s work presents a first-ever achievement in White criticism in that it offers an appraisal by an Indigenous critic of his representation of the black/white encounter in Australia from an Indigenous perspective. ' (From Introduction : xix)
(p. 257-268)
Patrick White’s Children : Juvenile Portraits in Happy Valley and The Hanging Garden, Elizabeth Webby , Margaret Harris , 2014 single work criticism
'Elizabeth Webby and Margaret Harris, at present collaborating in a major research project on the archive of White papers held at the National Library in Canberra, elucidate a delicate theme that has hardly drawn commentary from White critics before - White’s empathetic and sensitive portrayal of children in his novels. An additional interest derives from their drawing on their privileged access to unpublished material. Interesting links are traced between White’s first novel Happy Valley (1939) and his last (posthumously published) A Hanging Garden (2012).' (From Introduction, xix)
(p. 269-279)
The Hanging Garden, Alastair Niven , 2014 single work criticism
'Alastair Niven’s challenging speculation, proffered at the end of his incisive discussion of the novel The Hanging Garden suggests 'that this last work of White’s should not be regarded as a fragment abandoned by a writer in his declining years but is, in fact, the product of a confident artist still writing at the height of his powers.' (Source : Introduction, xix)
(p. 280-290)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

[Review Essay] Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Richard Scott Carr , 2016 single work single work review essay
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 16 no. 1 2016;

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism

'In ‘Australia’s Prodigal Son,’ John Barnes records an emblematic moment in his life: his 1988 meeting with Patrick White at La Trobe University prior to what would be the author’s final public address. Barnes recalls the overflowing crowd, the presence of TV cameras and the vociferous demands that the overflow crowd be allowed to sit in aisles or prop themselves against walls. To Barnes, the event, the size and fervor of the audience, was a milestone: ‘This was my first experience of an Australian writer being treated as a celebrity’ (3).' (Introduction)

Cynthia Vanden Driesen and Bill Ashcroft, Eds., Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Carolyn Bliss , 2016 single work review
— Appears in: Antipodes , June vol. 30 no. 1 2016; (p. 221-227)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism
White Papers Peter Pierce , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 10-11 January 2015; (p. 14-15)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism
[Review Essay] Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Coral Ann Howells , 2014 single work review essay
— Appears in: Le Simplegadi , November no. 13 2014; (p. 88-91)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism

'White is known to have speculated, at times, as to whether his works would be read after his death. That his reputation is in no danger of fading is surely attested by this birth centenary publication – the outcome of a conference held in India in December, 2012. It was attended by some of the best-known of White scholars as well as some excellent new contributors from all over the world; the latter being a promising augury for the future. White had an awareness of Indian culture, though it was his wide acquaintance with European culture that saturated his work, along with his deep roots in his native Australia. Perhaps it needs to be stated here that the epigraph to White’s earliest novel, Happy Valley (1939) was a quotation from Gandhi; and his earliest published short story, “The Twitching Colonel” (1937) records the experience of a retired British colonel who is literally consumed, it would appear, by what he has experienced in India.' (Introduction)

White Papers Peter Pierce , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 10-11 January 2015; (p. 14-15)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism
[Review Essay] Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Coral Ann Howells , 2014 single work review essay
— Appears in: Le Simplegadi , November no. 13 2014; (p. 88-91)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism

'White is known to have speculated, at times, as to whether his works would be read after his death. That his reputation is in no danger of fading is surely attested by this birth centenary publication – the outcome of a conference held in India in December, 2012. It was attended by some of the best-known of White scholars as well as some excellent new contributors from all over the world; the latter being a promising augury for the future. White had an awareness of Indian culture, though it was his wide acquaintance with European culture that saturated his work, along with his deep roots in his native Australia. Perhaps it needs to be stated here that the epigraph to White’s earliest novel, Happy Valley (1939) was a quotation from Gandhi; and his earliest published short story, “The Twitching Colonel” (1937) records the experience of a retired British colonel who is literally consumed, it would appear, by what he has experienced in India.' (Introduction)

[Review Essay] Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Richard Scott Carr , 2016 single work single work review essay
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 16 no. 1 2016;

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism

'In ‘Australia’s Prodigal Son,’ John Barnes records an emblematic moment in his life: his 1988 meeting with Patrick White at La Trobe University prior to what would be the author’s final public address. Barnes recalls the overflowing crowd, the presence of TV cameras and the vociferous demands that the overflow crowd be allowed to sit in aisles or prop themselves against walls. To Barnes, the event, the size and fervor of the audience, was a milestone: ‘This was my first experience of an Australian writer being treated as a celebrity’ (3).' (Introduction)

Cynthia Vanden Driesen and Bill Ashcroft, Eds., Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son Carolyn Bliss , 2016 single work review
— Appears in: Antipodes , June vol. 30 no. 1 2016; (p. 221-227)

— Review of Patrick White Centenary : The Legacy of a Prodigal Son 2014 anthology criticism
Last amended 17 Feb 2017 16:47:13
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