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Issue Details: First known date: 2006... 2006 Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'The new selection of essays from one of Australia's finest historians and writers.Agamemnon's Kiss is a thrilling selection of essays by one of Australia's most celebrated writers. Inga Clendinnen writes about everything from the books that terrified her as a child to what history can teach us about ourselves and our own times. She describes visits to the beach and to a museum dedicated to the Holocaust. She recounts the experience of falling ill and the prospect of death. And she writes movingly about other people who have changed her own life. Many of the themes which are central to Clendinnen's work are teased out in Agamemnon's Kiss: the question of black/white relations in Australia, the way we think about the Holocaust and its perpetrators, and the investigative power of history. Clendinnen is not just a brilliant thinker. She writes brilliant sentences too, and in these essays her full mastery of language is everywhere evident.' (Publication summary)

Notes

  • Dedication: In memory of my unknown donor, April 1994, and of Helen Daniel 1946-2000.

Contents

* Contents derived from the Melbourne, Victoria,:Text Publishing , 2006 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Introduction : Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay
Clendinnen reflects on the nature of the essay and the factors that distinguish essays from letters, diaries and the confessional.
(p. 1-8)
Big Louis, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 11-17)
Backstage at the Republic of Letters, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 18-30)
The Gecko in the Machine, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay humour (p. 31-37)
At the Beach Waves of Nostalgia, Inga Clendinnen , single work autobiography (p. 38-44)
Note: With title: At the Beach
Breaking the Mirror from the Aztec Feast of the Flaying of Men to Organ Transplantation, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 44-58)
Note: With title: Breaking the Mirror
Hobyahs!, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 59-63)
About Bones, Inga Clendinnen , single work prose biography (p. 64-84)
Postcard from Townsville, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 87-99)
Fellow Sufferers: History and Imagination, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 100-109)
Note: With title: Fellow Sufferers
Norman Mailer Meets Jack Ruby, Inga Clendinnen , single work criticism (p. 110-116)
Bernard Schlink's The Reader, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay
Review essay on Bernard Schlink's The Reader.
(p. 117-128)
Plenty Humbug, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay
Inga Clendinnen reflects on the role of the public intellectual in the context of external perceptions of Aboriginal culture.
(p. 129-147)
Dispatches from the History Wars, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay
Inga Clendinnen comments on Stuart Macintyre's The History Wars (2003) and the debate about Australian history among historians and commentators such as Keith Windshuttle, Henry Reynolds and Robert Manne.
(p. 148-157)
Building Treblinka, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 158-176)
Secret Meetings, Secret Lives, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 179-187)
The Crack in the Teacup: Reading Hilary Mantel, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 188-204)
Penelope Fitzgerald 1916-2000, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 205-211)
Anne Frank Biographers Find The Devil In The Detail, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay
A review essay on biographies of Anne Frank.
(p. 212-215)
Note:
  • With title: Anne Frank.
  • Slightly revised version.
Agamemnon's Kiss, Inga Clendinnen , single work essay (p. 216-228)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

The Past Is Not Sacred : A Dangerous Obsession with Anzac Peter Cochrane , 2015 single work essay
— Appears in: Griffith Review , April no. 48 2015; (p. 13-24)

'THE TERM ‘HISTORY wars’ is best known in Australia for summing up the fierce debate over the nature and extent of frontier conflict, with profound implications for the legitimacy of the British settlement and thus for national legitimacy today.

'That debate, though hardly resolved, is now taking something of a back seat to a public controversy focused on Australia’s wars of the twentieth century and particularly on the war of 1914–18, called the Great War until the Second World War redefined it as the First.' (Introduction)

Autobiographical Performance Within the Academy Elisabeth Hanscombe , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: LINQ , December no. 39 2012; (p. 62-72)

'The difficulty of writing as an autobiographer and simultaneously as a literary critic is that one trips the other up. My autobiographical self says I must write. I must follow the images in my mind. I must try to recreate my past, as bet I can, and fill in the gaps from my imagination. My unconscious will lead the way.' (Author's introduction)

Counter-Poetics Lyn McCredden , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , June vol. 26 no. 2 2011; (p. 91-108)
'Michel Foucault defined history as 'the discourse of power' (Society 68), arguing that the function of a 'counter-history' is 'to show that laws deceive, that kings wear masks, that power creates illusions, and the historians tell lies' (Bainbridge 58). Writing on the relationship of poetry to power, critic Simon Bainbridge argues, citing Byron's Don Juan, that in 'the face of a model of "History" which can only take "things in the gross", Foucault offers a counter history which enables us to "know them in detail"' (50). By disciplinary analogy, I will argue that the poetry of Indigenous Australian Tony Birch can best be read not only as a counter-history, but as a 'counter-poetics'. However, I will also ask whether this notion of poetic 'countering' is inherently oxymoronic, given that poetry is highly performative, writerly and readerly; at its best always a self-questioning and critical art.' (Author's introduction p. 91)
When 'History Changes Who We Were' Alice Healy , 2008 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , vol. 23 no. 4 2008; (p. 481-488)

— Review of Searching for the Secret River Kate Grenville , 2006 single work criticism ; The History Question : Who Owns the Past? Inga Clendinnen , 2006 single work essay ; Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay ; Is History Fiction? Ann Curthoys , John Docker , 2005 single work criticism
Nonfiction Kate Llewellyn , 2007 single work review
— Appears in: Island , Summer no. 111 2007; (p. 71-74)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
The Whole is Worthy of Its Parts A. P. Riemer , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 26-27 August 2006; (p. 32-33)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
Lucid Essays that Illuminate Mark Thomas , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 23 September 2006; (p. 12)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
Writing and its Role in Her History Peter Craven , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 23 September 2006; (p. 27)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
In the Eyes of a Steady Looker Helen MacDonald , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: The Australian Literary Review , October vol. 1 no. 2 2006; (p. 18)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
'Wylde for to Hold, though I Seme Tame' Morag Fraser , 2006 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , November no. 286 2006; (p. 11-12)

— Review of Agamemnon's Kiss : Selected Essays Inga Clendinnen , 2006 selected work essay
Counter-Poetics Lyn McCredden , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , June vol. 26 no. 2 2011; (p. 91-108)
'Michel Foucault defined history as 'the discourse of power' (Society 68), arguing that the function of a 'counter-history' is 'to show that laws deceive, that kings wear masks, that power creates illusions, and the historians tell lies' (Bainbridge 58). Writing on the relationship of poetry to power, critic Simon Bainbridge argues, citing Byron's Don Juan, that in 'the face of a model of "History" which can only take "things in the gross", Foucault offers a counter history which enables us to "know them in detail"' (50). By disciplinary analogy, I will argue that the poetry of Indigenous Australian Tony Birch can best be read not only as a counter-history, but as a 'counter-poetics'. However, I will also ask whether this notion of poetic 'countering' is inherently oxymoronic, given that poetry is highly performative, writerly and readerly; at its best always a self-questioning and critical art.' (Author's introduction p. 91)
Autobiographical Performance Within the Academy Elisabeth Hanscombe , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: LINQ , December no. 39 2012; (p. 62-72)

'The difficulty of writing as an autobiographer and simultaneously as a literary critic is that one trips the other up. My autobiographical self says I must write. I must follow the images in my mind. I must try to recreate my past, as bet I can, and fill in the gaps from my imagination. My unconscious will lead the way.' (Author's introduction)

The Past Is Not Sacred : A Dangerous Obsession with Anzac Peter Cochrane , 2015 single work essay
— Appears in: Griffith Review , April no. 48 2015; (p. 13-24)

'THE TERM ‘HISTORY wars’ is best known in Australia for summing up the fierce debate over the nature and extent of frontier conflict, with profound implications for the legitimacy of the British settlement and thus for national legitimacy today.

'That debate, though hardly resolved, is now taking something of a back seat to a public controversy focused on Australia’s wars of the twentieth century and particularly on the war of 1914–18, called the Great War until the Second World War redefined it as the First.' (Introduction)

Last amended 9 Apr 2018 16:15:25
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