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Australian Fantasies single work   criticism  
Issue Details: First known date: 2009... 2009 Australian Fantasies
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'Australian culture is frequently described as materialistic, hedonistic and fun-loving, and no doubt it is, in some respects, all those things. The 'land of the long week-end', its 'great stupor' perhaps, even the 'lucky country' - all these more or less flattering tags suggest, sometimes in the face of what their authors intended, that nothing can go seriously wrong in Australia, where life cannot be but easy-going and enjoyable. And so it would appear that, as Craig McGregor observed, 'the Australian race is engaged in a whole-hearted pursuit of happiness without guilt. The beach, in particular, has been for several decades one of the major symbols of the Australian way of life, the locus of Australian hedonism, where people worship the sun, display their near-naked bodies, and ogle other people's...' (p. 81)

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  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Messengers of Eros : Representations of Sex in Australian Writing Xavier Pons , Newcastle upon Tyne : Cambridge Scholars Press , 2009 Z1572958 2009 single work criticism

    'After decades of strict, puritanical censorship, Australian writers are free to address sexual issues. But sex remains a controversial and disturbing topic - its representation in poetry or fiction can never be free of ambiguities and still requires a variety of literary strategies to be made acceptable.

    Messengers of Eros examines those strategies and offers close readings of many Australian literary texts. It revisits classics such as Coonardoo, Capricornia or Such Is Life as well as major modern writers such as Patrick White, Peter Carey, David Malouf or Richard Flanagan, and engages with contemporary works whose status is still a matter for debate. It takes into account the postcolonial context of Australia's culture, especially where Indigenous and multicultural writers are concerned.

    This original and compelling book draws on the lessons of French theory and, though its approach is sympathetic to postmodernism, it never falls into academic jargon, remaining easily accessible to the general reader.' (Publisher's blurb)

    Newcastle upon Tyne : Cambridge Scholars Press , 2009
    pg. 81-95
Last amended 12 Feb 2010 11:15:54
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