6057194053447870984.jpg
This image has been sourced from online.
8390281108308595629.gif
This image has been sourced from online.
607088285404274562.gif
This image has been sourced from online.
5584023315390168581.jpg
Image courtesy of publisher's website.
y The Well single work   novel  
Issue Details: First known date: 1986... 1986 The Well
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Miss Hester Harper, middle-aged and eccentric, brings Katherine into her emotionally impoverished life. Together they sew, cook gourmet dishes for two, run the farm, make music and throw dirty dishes down the well. One night, driving along the deserted track that leads to the farm, they run into a mysterious creature. They heave the body from the roo bar and dump it into the farm's deep well. But the voice of the injured intruder will not be stilled and, most disturbing of all, the closer Katherine is drawn to the edge of the well, the farther away she gets from Hester.' (From the publisher's website.)

Adaptations

form y The Well Laura Jones , Australia : Southern Star Xanadu , 1997 Z817969 1997 single work film/TV fantasy (taught in 3 units)

Katherine works on an isolated farm run by Hester and Hester's father Francis. Unhappy because of her heavy workload, Katherine wants to leave. Hester doesn't want her to go, because she is attracted to her younger friend. She manages to convince Katherine to stay by promising to give her less work in the future. When old Francis dies, Hester sells the farm for cash, and she and Katherine move to a small cottage on the farm's edge, from where they plan a trip to Europe. A tragic accident and the theft of their money changes their plans.

Notes

  • Sound recordings, braille versions and video recording available.

    A film adaptation of this novel was released in 1997, from a script by Laura Jones, directed by Samantha Lang and featuring Pamela Rabe and Miranda Otto.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Ringwood, Ringwood - Croydon - Kilsyth area, Melbourne - East, Melbourne, Victoria,: Viking , 1986 .
      6057194053447870984.jpg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 176p.
      ISBN: 0670811033
    • Ringwood, Ringwood - Croydon - Kilsyth area, Melbourne - East, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 1987 .
      Extent: 176p.
      Reprinted: 1988
      ISBN: 0140267662 (pbk.)
    • New York (City), New York (State),
      c
      United States of America (USA),
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Penguin ,
      1987 .
      Extent: 176p.
      Note/s:
      • King Penguin
      ISBN: 0140089012
    • Ringwood, Ringwood - Croydon - Kilsyth area, Melbourne - East, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 1997 .
      8390281108308595629.gif
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 176p.
      ISBN: 0140267662
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2007 .
      607088285404274562.gif
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 252p.
      ISBN: 9780143180012
      Series: Penguin Modern Classics series - publisher
    • Camberwell, Camberwell - Kew area, Melbourne - Inner South, Melbourne, Victoria,: Penguin , 2009 .
      5584023315390168581.jpg
      Image courtesy of publisher's website.
      Extent: 252p.
      Note/s:
      • Publication date: 29 June 2009.
      ISBN: 9780143202769
      Series: y Popular Penguins Penguin (publisher), Camberwell : Penguin , 2008- Z1605341 2008 series - publisher novel essay short story
Alternative title: El poso
Language: Spanish

Works about this Work

Australia in Three Books Hannah Kent , 2016 single work essay
— Appears in: Meanjin , Summer vol. 75 no. 4 2016; (p. 23-25)
I read Elizabeth Jolley's 'The Well' in the first year of my postgraduate study after recognising, in vague, dispiriting shame, that I was ignorant of most writing by Australian women. I'd fed myself on a steady diet of British and North American writers in the heady days of my first years at university, and while I would have earnestly regarded myself as widely read, a feminist and a lover of literature, I had, in my zealous pursuit of 'culture', entirely neglected my own countrywomen. Feeling embarrassed, I picked up 'The Well' out of dry, almost punitive duty to educate myself about my antipodean literary heritage.' (Publication abstract)
Elizabeth Jolley's Life Experience's Influence on Her Literary Creation Zhang Geping , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Studies – Proceedings of the 14th International Conference of Australian Studies in China 2015; (p. 98-101)
'Elisabeth Jolley is an internationally famous Australian woman writer. At the age of fifty three, Jolley published her first novel. Her novel The Well won Miles Franklin Prize which was the highest literary award in Australia. Jolley's literary creation and her life experience are inseparable. Her life is full of ups and downs; her bumpy life promotes her literary creation, and her literary career is full of countless obstacles and setbacks. In spite of all these, she reaches her peak of literary creation after she overcomes the insurmountable hardships. Jolley conquers obstacles in life and grows into an internationally well-known writer. This paper intends to explore Jolley's life experience and its influence on her literary creation. The study of her life experience and its influences on her literary creation is of great significance to in-depth interpretation of Joney's literary works.' (98)
Mute Eloquence : Elizabeth Jolley’s The Well as Encrypted Melodrama Monique Rooney , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: JASAL , vol. 15 no. 1 2015;
'Drawing on Derrida’s reading of the crypt as both secret place and no place (Fors, 1986), and on Catherine Malabou’s work on the plasticity of form, this essay argues that buried in Elizabeth Jolley’s The Well (1986) is a Pygmalion-esque melodrama about animated stones and the turning to stone of the animated. This essay shows how the novel’s juxtapositions of song and speech place it in a musical-dramatic tradition that, reaching back to antiquity, has crossed spatio-temporal borders and metamorphosed in migration through various media, genres and modalities (including theatre and novel). Like the words carved on the palm of a hand, The Well’s melodrama is partly buried within its written form. Melodrama is, in this Australian story, an encrypted imaginary that nevertheless animates the novel’s fascination with terrestrial death and sub-terrestrial life and its depiction of a human will to closure or burial that exists alongside a will to expose, transfer, transform and renew.' (Publication abstract)
Down in Elizabeth Jolley's The Well : An Essay on Repression M. Pilar Baines Alarcos , 2014 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of Language, Literature & Culture , vol. 61 no. 1 2014; (p. 46-59)
'Female writers traditionally have found in the Gothic a useful weapon for criticising patriarchal ideologies and the constrictions they force upon women. This is the project undertaken by The Well, whose main character is a woman who usually challenges social norms in many ways and finds herself crippled, both physically and metaphorically, by the conservative Australian community in which she lives. The mysterious content of the well next to her cottage invites various interpretations. It acquires a richer meaning from a psychological perspective since it turns out to be the distorted reflection of the two female protagonists' psyche. It functions as a projected unconscious, a container of individual and collective memories, repressed fears, and desires. In the constant battle for power that takes place in the novel, the well becomes a site of female struggle against patriarchal authority. Above all it represents the main character's repressed sexuality, in a story wherein feminine sexuality significantly evokes the abject, and offers her the chance to come to terms with it.' (Author's abstract)
The Watertight Sieve Ellena Savage , 2013 single work essay
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 16 2013; (p. 44-45)
Untitled Judith Rodriguez , 1986 single work review
— Appears in: Fremantle Arts Review , December vol. 1 no. 12 1986; (p. 14-15)

— Review of The Well Elizabeth Jolley 1986 single work novel
Untitled Daphne Glazer , 1987 single work review
— Appears in: Margin , no. 18 1987; (p. 20-21)

— Review of The Well Elizabeth Jolley 1986 single work novel
Plumbing the Depths of Darkness Sue Hosking , 1987 single work review
— Appears in: The CRNLE Reviews Journal , no. 2 1987-1988; (p. 68-71)

— Review of In the Winter Dark Tim Winton 1988 single work novel ; The Well Elizabeth Jolley 1986 single work novel
Deep, Dark and Divine Phil Brown , 2007 single work review
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 1 - 2 December 2007; (p. 29)

— Review of The Well Elizabeth Jolley 1986 single work novel
Dotty and Disorderly Conduct Robert Coover , 1986 single work review
— Appears in: The New York Times Book Review , 16 November 1986; (p. 44-45)

— Review of The Well Elizabeth Jolley 1986 single work novel ; Woman in a Lampshade Elizabeth Jolley 1983 selected work short story
Babies Eat Their Lace: Elizabeth Jolley and the Slaughter of Decorum Eden Liddelow , 2002 single work criticism
— Appears in: After Electra : Rage, Grief and Hope in Twentieth-Century Fiction 2002; (p. 118-136, notes 194-195)
Quick at Meals, Quick at Work Elizabeth Jolley , 2006 single work prose
— Appears in: Learning to Dance : Elizabeth Jolley : Her Life and Work 2006; (p. 271-278)
A Scattered Catalogue of Consolation Elizabeth Jolley , 2006 single work autobiography
— Appears in: Learning to Dance : Elizabeth Jolley : Her Life and Work 2006; (p. 17-53)
'As One Whom His Mother Comforteth, So Will I Comfort You : Elizabeth Jolley's Catalogue of Consolation Elaine Lindsay , 2006 single work criticism
— Appears in: Southerly , vol. 66 no. 1 2006; (p. 52-65)
Treasured Memories Katharine England , 2007 single work column
— Appears in: Advertiser The , 8 December 2007; (p. 11)
Last amended 11 Apr 2017 14:01:34
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