AustLit logo
Graham Huggan Graham Huggan i(A10437 works by)
Born: Established: 1958 ;
Gender: Male
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

Works By

Preview all
1 Greening White Graham Huggan , 2022 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of Postcolonial Writing , vol. 58 no. 1 2022; (p. 21-35)

'Patrick White’s support for green issues, especially in his later life, is well documented; however, relatively little attention has been paid to date to the planetary perspective of his fiction which, as Andrew McCann suggests, hints at “the possibility of a renewed relationship to the ‘earth’ ”. Focusing on what is generally considered to be his “greenest” novel, The Tree of Man, and adopting a broadly eco-materialist approach, this article assesses White’s work in the wake of the recent ecological and planetary turns. What difference does it make to position White, not as a national or an international writer, but as a planetary writer?And what if White’s work, usually looked at for the insights it provides into human subjects and subjectivities, were to be looked at instead in relation to what Jane Bennett calls “the material agency or effectivity of nonhuman or not-quite-human things”?' (Publication abstract)

1 Last Whales : Eschatology, Extinction and the Cetaean Imaginary in Winton and Pash Graham Huggan , 2017 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Journal of Commonwealth Literature , June vol. 52 no. 2 2017;
'Few of the earth’s creatures capture the popular imagination quite like the whale, which has come to serve as an ambivalent figure for both salvation and perdition, whether the moral dramas that unfold around it are seen in religious (eschatological) or scientific (ecological) terms. Whales are at once signifiers for extinction, pointing to the threat of planetary destruction, and signifiers for redemption, in which the ongoing environmentalist campaign for protection doubles as a human struggle to save us from ourselves. This article looks at two contemporary Australian literary texts, Tim Winton’s Shallows (1985) and Chris Pash’s The Last Whale (2008), both of which explore competing extinction scenarios: the extinction of whales; the extinction of the whaling industry; and the extinction of whaling as a way of life. Given the further possibility of human self-extinction, the article argues that a new cetacean imaginary is needed in which whales are seen as complex manifestations of a life that co-exists with humanity, but is neither reducible to human understandings of history nor to the various futures — or non-futures — that human beings might imagine for themselves.' (Publication abstract)
1 [Review] Travel Writing from Black Australia: Utopia, Melancholia, and Aboriginality Graham Huggan , 2016 single work review
— Appears in: Studies in Travel Writing , vol. 20 no. 4 2016; (p. 424-425)

— Review of Travel Writing from Black Australia : Utopia, Melancholia, and Aboriginality Robert Clarke , 2019 multi chapter work criticism

'The basis for Robert Clarke’s wide-ranging study of recent Australian travel writing is his contention that encounters with Australia – whether on the part of residents of or visitors to that country – are nearly always set against an experience of Black Australia that places Aboriginality at the centre of national life. “Aboriginality” and “Black Australia” are both tricky terms, as Clarke well knows, and both remain at the heart of intense, sometime fractious discussions about the protocols surrounding the acknowledgment of Aboriginal worldviews and ways of life. Simply put, neither Aboriginality nor Black Australia have a great deal to do with what Aboriginal people think about themselves; rather, both are intersubjective – if rarely fully reciprocal – formations that provide a general framework for what white people think about Aborigines and, far less often, what Aborigines think about them.' (Introduction)

1 Australian Literature, Risk, and the Global Climate Challenge Graham Huggan , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: Literature, Interpretation, Theory , vol. 26 no. 2 2015; (p. 85-105)
'Envision two scenarios, the one real the other imagined, both played out in Australia's southeast regions. In the imagined one, taken from George Turner's post-apocalyptic story “The Fittest,” the year is 2035 and parts of Melbourne are under water. The embattled city is divided into two camps, the Swill and the Sweet, who make up nine tenths and one tenth of the population, respectively. The Swill live in run-down tenement blocks in the low-lying southern and western areas of the city, which are at the mercy of rising sea levels caused by the catastrophic melting of the ice caps. The Sweet look down on the Swill, both literally and metaphorically, from their privileged vantage on the higher levels. The Swill, meanwhile, are left to fend for themselves in a daily and brutal struggle for survival: jobless, hungry, they are little more than predatory animals, a racially stigmatized underclass equivalent to Asia's barbarian hordes (Maxwell 20–21; Morgan). In the real one, the year is 2013 and parts of Tasmania have been transformed into an inferno. A devastating heatwave covering most of the southern and eastern parts of Australia has caused wildfires to spread, with its largest offshore island bearing the brunt of it. There are few deaths, but hundreds of people are displaced and irreparable damage is done to thousands of hectares of land and property. Media commentators return to that most obdurate if readily reversible of clichés, Australia as un/lucky country, linking the sins of commission (the perils of boom-and-bust economics) to those of omission (the price paid for ecological neglect).1 Spoiling as always for a fight, the British environmental campaigner George Monbiot sanctimoniously reminds his antipodean cousins that they burn twice as much carbon as his own countrymen, and that the history of Australia, framed as a “land of opportunity in which progress is limited only by the rate at which natural resources can be extracted,” doubles as a cautionary tale of what happens when “climate change clashes with a story of great cultural power.” Lest the moral of the story be unclear, Monbiot flourishingly underscores it: “Australia's new weather,” he says, “demands a new politics, a politics capable of responding to an existential threat.”' (Author's introduction)
1 2 y separately published work icon Postcolonial Ecocriticism : Literature, Animals, Environment Graham Huggan , Helen Tiffin , New York (City) : Routledge Taylor & Francis Group , 2010 Z1827074 2010 single work criticism
1 Nazis, the Holocaust, and Australia’s History Wars Graham Huggan , 2010 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Studies , vol. 2 no. 2010;

'The essay engages with ongoing debates about the validity of comparing Holocaust memory, situating these in the context of Australia's History Wars. Looking at Markus Zusak's The Book Thief (2005) as a recent fictional attempt to confront the effects of both Holocaust memory and German perpetrator trauma, it also considers the novel's status as a displaced (Australian-authored) German survivor's account. Arguing against a facile assimilation of the novel to the contemporary 'Holocaust industry', the essay asserts the value of a transnational approach that insists on the cultural and historical specificity of the Holocaust while showing its continuing usefulness in energising discourses of traumatic memory not necessarily related to the Shoah itself. At the same time, it sounds a cautionary note against using the Holocaust, either as a form of screen memory to avoid confronting colonial violence or as a negative analogy to assert the relative innocuousness of the Australian past.' (Author's abstract)

1 Globaloney and the Australian Writer Graham Huggan , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of the European Association for Studies on Australia , vol. 1 no. 2009; (p. 45-63)
'The essay looks at the extent to which Australian literature is part of transnational communication networks that are generally accepted as being part of the "global condition" of the late-capitalist world. Without wishing to deny that globalization exists, the essay suggests that much of the rhetoric surrounding it is "globaloney", and that contemporary debates about the globalization of Australian literature are not immune. The essay also looks at the "globaloney" underlying continuing debates about expatriation and cultural nationalism, using specific examples drawn from the work of Peter Carey and Germaine Greer.' Source: Graham Huggan.
1 Untitled Graham Huggan , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: Commonwealth , Autumn vol. 32 no. 1 2009; (p. 122-123)

— Review of Five Emus to the King of Siam: Environment and Empire 2007 anthology criticism
1 Postcolonial Ecocriticism and the Limits of Green Romanticism Graham Huggan , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of Postcolonial Writing , March vol. 45 no. 1 2009; (p. 3-14)
This essay assesses the emerging alliance between postcolonial criticism and ecocriticism in the light of continuing debates on 'Green Romanticism'. It considers what is at stake in contending positions within this debate, what contributions postcolonial writers and thinkers have made to it, and what some of the implications might be of bringing postcolonial criticism and ecocriticism together, both for the reassessment of Romantic ecological legacies and for the 'greening' of postcolonial thought. -- Author's abstract
1 1 Globaloney Graham Huggan , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: JASAL , Special Issue 2009;

'In an essay now just over twenty years old, Peter Pierce laments what he calls the 'dichotomising habit' of Australian literary historians. Pierce testily suggests that '[t]he literary histories of Australia that invent different issues of debate, that abandon residual insecurities concerning the value of local materials remain to be written' - a challenge since energetically met by a number of histories and companions that seem to me at least to be neither melodramatic nor dichotomous, and that bring academic discussions surrounding the national literature more or less fully up to date. However, Pierce's observation still arguably holds for public discussions, many of them involving academics, and in which the present and future of Australian literature are confidently presented from a series of often directly opposing points of view. One view, the industry equivalent to the 'gloom thesis', proposes that Australian literature is dying, and cites evidence in dwindling recruitment and enrolment numbers at Australian universities, and in the depressing number of Australian literary classics that are currently out of print. The other view, equally forthright, is that Australian literature is booming, not least because of structural changes brought about to the publishing industry by globalisation, and as evidenced in the flourishing of Australian literature in international markets, in the expansion of writers' prizes and festivals, and in the active contribution of Australian writers, both 'high-art' and popular, to ongoing discussions of Australian national culture in an increasingly mediatised public sphere.'

1 Crocodile Tears : The Life and Death of Steve Irwin Graham Huggan , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Celebrity Colonialism : Fame, Power and Representation in Colonial and Postcolonial Cultures 2009; (p. 239-254)
1 9 y separately published work icon Australian Literature : Postcolonialism, Racism, Transnationalism Graham Huggan , New York (City) : Oxford University Press , 2007 Z1450654 2007 single work criticism
1 Vampires, Again Graham Huggan , 2006 single work criticism
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 66 no. 3 2006; (p. 192-204)
1 2 Cultural Memory in Postcolonial Fiction : The Uses and Abuses of Ned Kelly Graham Huggan , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , May vol. 20 no. 3 2002; (p. 142-154) The AustLit Anthology of Criticism 2010; (p. 4)
Focusing on Carey's and Drewe's representations of the Ned Kelly legend, the article explores the issues of memory, cultural myths and postcolonial fiction. Huggan argues that the two novels 'illustrate the importance of the literary text in structuring the individual/collective memory process', drawing attention to the ways in which memory is dependent on metaphor, particularly metaphors of the body, to actualise remembered experience. Both works 'are postcolonial renderings, not just of one of Australia's most powerful national narratives, but also one of its most enduring and yet paradoxiacally amnesiac cultural myths. In remembering Ned Kelly, both writers draw attention to alternative histories inscribed upon the wild colonial body, through which tha nation's chequered past can be creatively transformed and its present critically reassessed.' The article concludes with reflections on the malleability and current fashionability of the Kelly legend, assessing its implications for 'a Wester ex-settler society whose own thriving memory industry bears so many of the contradictory signs of the nation's colonial past'.
1 Ethnic Autobiography and the Cult of Authenticity Graham Huggan , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Studies , Winter vol. 15 no. 2 2002; (p. 37-62) Contemporary Issues in Australian Literature 2002; (p. 37-62)
1 Ethnic Autobiography and the Cult of Authenticity Graham Huggan , 2001 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Postcolonial Exotic : Marketing the Margins 2001; (p. 155-176)
1 Transformations of the Tourist Gaze : Asia in Recent Canadian and Australian Fiction Graham Huggan , 2001 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Postcolonial Exotic : Marketing the Margins 2001; (p. 177-208)
1 4 y separately published work icon The Postcolonial Exotic : Marketing the Margins Graham Huggan , London New York (City) : Routledge , 2001 Z829453 2001 multi chapter work
1 The Australian Tourist Novel Graham Huggan , 1997 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australia and Asia : Cultural Transactions 1997; (p. 162-175)
1 Book Reviews Graham Huggan , 1997 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Studies , Summer vol. 12 no. 1 1997; (p. 156-158)

— Review of A. D. Hope Kevin Hart , 1992 single work criticism ; Gerald Murnane Imre Salusinszky , 1993 single work criticism ; Patrick White Simon During , 1996 single work criticism