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y Picnic at Hanging Rock single work   novel   historical fiction   mystery  
Issue Details: First known date: 1967... 1967 Picnic at Hanging Rock
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'It was a cloudless summer day in the year 1900. Everyone at Appleyard College for Young Ladies agreed it was just right for a picnic at Hanging Rock. After lunch, a group of three girls climbed into the blaze of the afternoon sun, pressing on through the scrub into the shadows of the secluded volcanic outcropping. Farther, higher, until at last they disappeared. They never returned. ...'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Penguin Random House, 2014).

Adaptations

form y Picnic at Hanging Rock Cliff Green , ( dir. Peter Weir ) Australia Adelaide : McElroy and McElroy , 1975 Z822342 1975 single work film/TV mystery horror (taught in 9 units)

On St Valentine's Day 1900, three schoolgirls and a teacher from an exclusive English-style boarding school go missing at the mysterious Hanging Rock in central Victoria. One of the girls is found alive a week later, but the others are never seen again. As morale within the school begins to disintegrate, the headmistress's increasingly incoherent anger is turned towards one student, leading to tragic consequences. Although the police suspect Michael Fitzhubert, a young English aristocrat, and his manservant Albert, who were in the area at the time the girls disappeared, the mystery is never solved. As Paul Byrnes (Australian Screen) notes, the suggested scenarios range from the 'banal and explicable (a crime of passion) to deeply mystical (a crime of nature).'

[Source: Australian Screen]

y Lady Joan Lindsay's Picnic at Hanging Rock : A Full Length Play Laura Annawyn Shamas , Woodstock : Dramatic Publishing Company , 1987 Z818128 1987 single work drama mystery
Picnic at Hanging Rock Tom Wright , 2016 single work drama

'Australia, 1900. An ancient land becomes the site of an impossible mystery. A group of schoolgirls and their teachers venture out into the sundrenched landscape, only for four of their number to disappear forever.

'The subsequent investigation creates more questions than answers. One of the girls is found with no memory of what happened to her or her classmates, another succumbs to hysteria for no apparent reason. Those close to the missing girls begin to meet with unfortunate ends and it becomes clear that this is no ordinary disappearance.' (Production summary)

form y Picnic at Hanging Rock Beatrix Christian , Alice Addison , Australia : Foxtel FremantleMedia Australia , 2017 10020967 2017 series - publisher film/TV historical fiction mystery

Teaching Resources

This work has teaching resources.

Teaching resources written by Anthony Shaw, published by AustLit.

Notes

  • Ranked #10 in ABC1's First Tuesday Book Club '10 Aussie Books to Read Before You Die' 2012 voting ballot.
  • Other formats: Also braille, sound recording, large print.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Cheshire , 1967 .
      2221798898811365861.png
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 212p.
    • Harmondsworth, Middlesex,
      c
      England,
      c
      c
      United Kingdom (UK),
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Ringwood, Ringwood - Croydon - Kilsyth area, Melbourne - East, Melbourne, Victoria,: New York (City), New York (State),
      c
      United States of America (USA),
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Ontario,
      c
      Canada,
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Penguin ,
      1970 .
      Extent: 213p.
      Reprinted: 1975 , 1976 , 1977
    • Adelaide, South Australia,: Rigby , 1975 .
      Extent: 212p.
      ISBN: 0855583649
    • Gladesville, Ryde - Gladesville - Hunters Hill area, Northwest Sydney, Sydney,: Golden Press , 1975 .
      Extent: 212p.
    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Viking , 1987 .
      Extent: 204p.
      Description: illus.(some col.), map.
    • Pymble, Turramurra - Pymble - St Ives area, Sydney Northern Suburbs, Sydney,: Cornstalk Publishing , 1992 .
      Extent: 204p.
      Description: ill., (some col.), map
      ISBN: 0670818283
    • London,
      c
      England,
      c
      c
      United Kingdom (UK),
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Vintage ,
      1998 .
      Extent: 188p.
      ISBN: 0099750619
    • Kyneton, Kyneton area, Sunbury - Kyneton area, Melbourne, Victoria,: Macedon Ranges Shire Council , 2002 .
      Extent: 219p.
      Limited edition info: Hardcover edition limited to 200 individually numbered copies.
      Description: illus.
      Note/s:
      • With images from the production of Peter Weir's film of the novel and excerpts from the motion picture screenplay by Cliff Green.
      • Issued with an original 16 frame trim from the editing workprint of the film Picnic at Hanging Rock.
      ISBN: 0959941037
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2009 .
      Extent: 192p.
      Note/s:
      • Publication date: 29 June 2009.
      ISBN: 9780143202721
      Series: y Popular Penguins Penguin (publisher), Camberwell : Penguin , 2008- Z1605341 2008 series - publisher novel essay short story
    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2013 .
      2451937109971219799.jpg
      Image courtesy of Penguin Books
      Extent: 280p.
      Note/s:
      • Published: 20/03/2013
      ISBN: 9780670076857
      Series: y Penguin Australian Children's Classics Melbourne : Penguin , 2012- 6153702 2012 series - publisher children's fiction
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2013 .
      6179407750872617367.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Extent: 264p.
      Note/s:
      • Published 20 November 2013
      ISBN: 9780143569732
      Series: Penguin Classics Penguin Books (publisher), series - publisher
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2013 .
      6241838756100286429.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Extent: 1vp.
      Note/s:
      • Published 30 January 2013

        Available as an ebook

      ISBN: 9781743480946
      Series: y Popular Penguins Penguin (publisher), Camberwell : Penguin , 2008- Z1605341 2008 series - publisher novel essay short story
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2014 .
      4577548656075940128.jpg
      Cover image courtesy of publisher.
      Extent: 192p.
      Note/s:
      • Published: 23/04/2014
      ISBN: 9780734311252
      Series: y Pink Popular Penguin Melbourne : Penguin , 2013 5970429 2013 series - publisher novel
Alternative title: Pique-nique à Hanging Rock
Language: French
    • Paris,
      c
      France,
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Flammarion ,
      1976 .
      Extent: 246p.
      ISBN: 2080608797
    • Paris,
      c
      France,
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      Livre de Poche ,
      2016 .
      3074715151667892072.jpeg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 318p.p.
      ISBN: 9782253068976, 2253068977

Works about this Work

Postcolonial Gothic : Australia, CAnada, New Zealand, South Pacific Gerry Turcotte , 2017 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Oxford History of the Novel in English : The Novel in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the South Pacific Since 1950 2017; (p. 205-220)

'Postcolonial Gothic, like revisionist historical fiction, might be seen as another symptom of the reassessment of discourses of colonial history since the 1960s, though Gothic interrogations of national cultural myths have a darker more anxious quality, tending to focus on 'ghost stories' that haunt narratives of origin...' (Introduction)

Did It Really Happen? : Picnic at Hanging Rock Christopher Conti , 2017 single work essay
— Appears in: Sydney Review of Books , September 2017;

'Joan Lindsay’s Picnic at Hanging Rock, which turns fifty this year, owes a share of its longevity to the modern folklore of vanished white women that has swirled around sites like Hanging Rock in Victoria’s Macedon Ranges since the nineteenth century. Lindsay’s Gothic legend still clings to this unique rock formation. The tale’s enduring appeal and unsettling allure arises from a mist of fact and fiction, casting a magic unspoiled even by the kitsch tourist injunction at Hanging Rock Reserve to ‘Experience the Mystery.’ No matter how often the story is demystified, its ghost lives on in urban legend, with all the appearance of an actual unsolved crime. The mystery lives on in the inescapable question: did it really happen?'  (Introduction)

y No Picnic at Hanging Rock Helen Goltz , Stones Corner : Atlas Productions , 2017 11400232 2017 multi chapter work criticism

'On Valentine’s Day 1900, three schoolgirls and a teacher disappear while on a school outing at Hanging Rock in Victoria.

'What became of the missing girls and their teacher?

'Joan Lindsay’s Picnic at Hanging Rock detailed the tragedy, and the author left strict instructions for the final chapter not to be printed until her death.

'Many Australians remember the 1967 book and 1975 film; many high school students studied it as part of their school curriculum. But was the story real? And did the secret chapter released after Joan Lindsay's death cast a new light on the fate of the missing ladies?' (Publication abstract)

Many Girls White Linen i "no mist no mystery", Alison Whittaker , 2017 single work poetry
— Appears in: Overland , Autumn no. 226 2017; (p. 29-30)
Judges Report : In Alison Whittaker’s ‘MANY GIRLS WHITE LINEN’, which placed equal first, the plight of First Nations peoples is front and centre. Through its torsional rhymes and rhythms, the poem eviscerates the iconic whiteness of Picnic at Hanging Rock and stuns with its own iconic imagery: ‘amongst gums collecting grit / where blak girls hang / nails’. The poem is, to quote Whittaker, ‘raw rousing horrifying’.
y Beyond the Rock : The Life of Joan Lindsay and the Mystery of Picnic at Hanging Rock Janelle McCulloch , Richmond : Echo Publishing , 2017 10185904 2017 single work biography

'In the winter of 1966, at sixty-nine years of age, Lady Joan Lindsay sat down and wrote a short novel about a group of upper-class schoolgirls from a prestigious ladies’ college who disappear while on a country picnic in the summer of 1900. The result was Picnic at Hanging Rock, a literary mystery that has endured for half a century.

'Beyond the Rock looks at not just the myth of Picnic and how it has become part of Australia’s culture, but also the story behind it. It examines Joan Lindsay’s enigmatic life, much of which she kept secret from the world, including her childhood, her complex marriage to Daryl Lindsay of the famous Lindsay family of artists, their enduring love and unconventional bohemian life, and her life at Mulberry Hill, the Lindsays’ own Arcadia deep in the Victorian countryside.

'This is the story of one of Australia’s most famous novels, and the author who kept its secrets until she died.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

New Fiction Martha Lemming , 1968 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , March vol. 7 no. 5 1968; (p. 88)

— Review of An Affair of Clowns : Short Stories and Sketches Thelma Forshaw 1967 selected work short story ; Dynasty Tony Morphett 1967 single work novel ; Picnic at Hanging Rock Joan Lindsay 1967 single work novel
Sunlit Mystery 1967 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 9 December vol. 89 no. 4579 1967; (p. 82)

— Review of Picnic at Hanging Rock Joan Lindsay 1967 single work novel
Untitled Scrutarius , 1968 single work review
— Appears in: Walkabout , vol. 34 no. 3 1968; (p. 45-46)

— Review of Picnic at Hanging Rock Joan Lindsay 1967 single work novel
Picnicking with E. M. Forster, Joan Lindsay et.al. Donald Barrett , 1987 single work criticism
— Appears in: LiNQ , vol. 15 no. 1 1987; (p. 79-86)
Between the Rock and a Dark Place Rachel Wells , 2005 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 14 February 2005; (p. 4)
True Fakes Simon Caterson , 2006 single work criticism
— Appears in: Eureka Street , March-April vol. 16 no. 2 2006; (p. 34-35)
150 Years 150 Books 150 Words 600 Entries 10 Winners Lili Wilkinson , 2004 single work column
— Appears in: The Newsletter of the Australian Centre for Youth Literature , October no. 3 2004; (p. 8-12)
The aim of the Save This Book competition was to nominate a book from the last 150 years, from a list of 150 titles, and explain why (in 150 words) why it should be saved from a tidal wave. Winners' submissions are included.
Hanging Rock, desafiante misterio 2006 single work criticism
— Appears in: Hontanar , March no. 84 2006; (p. 2-3)
Last amended 13 Sep 2017 15:08:43
Settings:
  • Mount Macedon, Gisborne - Woodend area, Sunbury - Kyneton area, Melbourne, Victoria,
  • Gisborne - Woodend area, Sunbury - Kyneton area, Melbourne, Victoria,
  • 1900
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