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Issue Details: First known date: 2010... 2010 Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

Remembering Patrick White presents the first major study of the full range of White’s work in over twenty-five years, and aims to bring this important author up to date for new generations of readers and scholars. Patrick White is a writer of moods and perspectives and the essays collected here range in their focus over his public presentations, his formal challenges, his spiritual leanings and dramatic gestures. They examine the breadth and significance of White’s intellectual contribution and consider the ongoing legacy of his thought and his art within national and international frames. As a collection, they focus our attention on what Patrick White means at the juncture of the present, reading his work through contemporary critical perspectives that further underscore the dynamism and substance of his writing. (Publisher's blurb)

Exhibitions

6681414

Contents

* Contents derived from the Amsterdam,
c
Netherlands,
c
Western Europe, Europe,
:
New York (City), New York (State),
c
United States of America (USA),
c
Americas,
:
Rodopi , 2010 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Introduction, Elizabeth McMahon , Brigitta Olubas , single work criticism
'Patrick White remains a key figure  in twentieth century literature and central to Australian literature as it is read and studied across the globe. Remembering Patrick White presents the first major study of the full range of White's work in over twenty-five years, and aims to bring White up to date for new generations of readers and scholars, with essays by twelve White scholars and associates, together with a current bibliography of critical work and commentary published since 1994. This collection revisits familiar territory from White scholarship — metaphysics, performance, suburban representations — as well as providing new approaches, such as queer readings and modernist aesthetics. Importantly, it takes up the opportunity provided by the recent hiatus in scholarly interest in White to reconsider the question of his location as a national writer, and to extend the reach of scholarly commentary beyond a national point of departure.'  (Introduction)
 
(p. ix-xvii)
Public Recluse : Patrick White's Literary-Political Returns, Brigid Rooney , single work criticism
'The oxymoron in my title, "public recluse," reprises a familiar representation of Patrick White as a reserved, even anti-social writer whose career nonetheless forced him into the public spotlight! According to Judith Wright, he had had to be "winkled out of his misanthropic shell" to attend the launch, in 1981, of the People for Nuclear Disarmament Party at which he was the star attraction? References to White as snail, mollusk, oyster or crustacean abound. Consider, for example, Barry Humphries' suggestion that Australia itself was the "irritant," the grit White needed to produce those pearls, his books. Irritability in turn was a hallmark of White's public persona, and can be found everywhere, from letters to friends to media interviews and political speechmaking.' (Introduction)
 
(p. 3-18)
Riders in the Chariot : A Tale for Our Times, Bernadette Brennan , single work criticism
'This article rereads Patrick White's Riders in the Chariot against some of the past criticism of the text. It argues that the text has much to say about the contemporary politics of fear operating in Australia and demonstrates that many of the historical readings of White as an elitist, alienated Modernist cannot be sustained. The contemporary relevance and force of this novel arises from a double movement: the beauty of White's prose operates continually to allow us to perceive the "infinite in everything" but it also helps us understand the absolutely ordinary fears and insecurities of the suburban Australian consciousness. Through the ordinary everydayness of his Australian characters (other than the riders) we see all too clearly how the ignorance and prejudice of a very small few have the ability to snowball with catastrophic consequences. Himmelfarb, in the face of horror, turned away from literature believing that intellectual reasoning had failed humanity. Today it is the fear of intellectual reasoning that has the potential to make us all less than we have the potential to be.' (Author's abstract)
(p. 19-34)
Patrick White and his Award, Rodney Wetherell , single work criticism
'To my surprise, I find I have been on the Committee for the Patrick White Award for twenty-five years, so this gives me a good opportunity to share with others for the first time what the experience has been like. It was an even greater surprise to get a phone call from Patrick White in about September 1982. In his reedy voice and best imperious manner he asked me to join the Committee, on a probationary basis. He had decided to step down, wanting to make sure all was in order in case he should suddenly depart this life. If at the first meeting he thought I shaped up all right, he would then go off the Committee him. self. I must have passed muster, since I'm still here, but Patrick emit( never bring himself to stay away from the meetings, and in fact controlled his own Award till the day he died.'

 (Introduction)

 
 
(p. 35-46)
Homo Nullius : The Politics of Pessimism in Patrick White’s The Tree of Man, Jennifer Rutherford , single work criticism
'One would have to be melancholic to champion Patrick White in an Australian university in the opening decade of the twenty-first century. Or, as one student said, seeing a photo of Patrick White pinned up outside my office, "You must have a hell of a death drive."'

 (Introduction)

(p. 47-64)
The Symbol in Patrick White, Anthony Uhlmann , single work criticism
'This essay has two parts. In the first I will offer some contexts for an understanding of the 'symbol' and how it was used in practice by modernist writers, with specific examples being drawn from Yeats and Joyce. In the second, I will connect this con-textual background to a reading of White's The Solid Mandala and Riders in the Chariot. My purpose in doing this is not to elucidate the kinds of symbols White uses; rather, I am interested in the function of the symbol in these works. That is, I am interested in what a symbol might be thought to be, and what White does to this object, which, in short, will be identified with the idea of 'the meaningful' itself.  will suggest that White treats the symbol differently from his predecessors, placing a peculiar stress upon it. ' (Introduction)
 
(p. 65-76)
The Lateness and Queerness of The Twyborn Affair : White’s Farewell to the Novel, Elizabeth McMahon , single work criticism
'This essay undertakes a reappraisal of The Twyborn Affair (1979), focusing on its status as the final novel by Patrick White. David Marr's biography shows that White did not always consider The Twyborn Affair would be his last novel, and was in fact planning another while in the final stages of writing. As we know, however, this other novel did not eventuate, and The Twyborn Affair remains for posterity as White's theatricalized and over-determined farewell to the novel. This status is further underscored by the way his two subsequent works announce generic departures from the novel: the work immediate following is his biography, Flaws in the Glass: A Self Portrait (1981); and his final work is a memoir, Memoirs of Many in One (1986). Moreover, the latter work is signed by the pseudonymous "Agnes Xenophon Demirjian Gray," rather than Patrick White, who performs a removal from authorship to the role of editor.. (Introduction)
(p. 77-94)
The Presence of the Sacred in Patrick White, Bill Ashcroft , single work criticism
'It was once said by W.B. Yeats that artists arc the antennae of society, and Australian writers have been alert to a dimension of the sacred that seems to lie beyond the edge of the nation's secular consciousness. Conventional religious observance has never occupied a prominent place in Australia's national culture. But the striking feature of Australian art and writing is the extent to which it has produced a sense of the sacred that seemed denied in cultural life. A radical transformation of the sacred began to occur in that art and writing in the nineteenth century, a transformation originating squarely in the colonial encounter with a new and threatening land, best described by the terms, exile, displacement, unheindichkeit — an encounter steeped in awe and uncertainty, question and discovery. Australian artists and writers found a language with which to consider the incomprehensible vastness of Australian space. This was the language of the sublime. It was not the vertical sublime of mountains and gorges, storms and tempests, of the European Romantics, but a 'Horizonal Sublime' focused on the vastness, the openness, the distance of Australia, the psychic line of its endless horizon.' Although most noticeable in painting, it also characterized the attempt by nineteenth-century writers to produce an aesthetic that could fully apprehend the way in which Space had overwhelmed History in the Australian imagination.' (Introduction)
 
(p. 95-108)
Voss : Earthed and Transformative Sacredness, Lyn McCredden , single work criticism
'Patrick White's fifth novel, Voss (1957), has long been gathering about itself the status of icon. However, the hermeneutic processes and the interpretations that have fed this iconicity are still open to debate. Sidney Nolan's famous black-and-white sketch of Voss, appearing first on the front cover of the 1960 edition, is haunting in its depiction of the solid, dapper, bespectacled German man equipping himself for the journey. Equally, and ironically, the sketch is minimalist, hinting at the unknowableness of this foreign man with his slightly different hat. While it suggests that the explorer possesses a sturdiness and control — the trim beard (though seen as scraggy by Laura), the neat shirt buttoned to the collar, the sense of efficiency if not indomitability about the figure with his hands clasped behind — it also suggests that he is dis-placed, not all-knowing, perhaps myopic. The figure in the novel, and in Nolan's hands, is both substance and ghost, knowing and unknowing, earthed and out of place.' (Introduction)
 
(p. 109-124)
The Dragon Slayer : Patrick White and the Contestation of History, Veronica Brady , single work criticism
'Let me use two quotations to frame my argument. The first is from Nietzsche's Twilight of the Idols, an attack on commonsense, what is generally seen as "the 'true' world, which he dismissed as an "idea which is no longer good for anything, not even obligating - an idea which has become useless and superfluous - consequently, a refined idea: let us abolish it!"' The second is Adomo's claim that transcendence, properly understood and pursued, enables thought to "converge upon something that would differ from the unspeakable world that is."2 A strain that is at once utopian and dystopian runs through Australian culture, as it does through most colonial cultures, and these two quotations speak to the tension between the two apparent in the work of Patrick White and also to the way he negotiates it.'  (Introduction)
(p. 125-138)
The Late, Crazy Plays, John McCallum , single work criticism
'Patrick White's relationship with the Australian stage has been tumultuous, to say the least — from the early controversies surrounding his plays The Ham Funeral and The Season at Sarsaparilla at the Adelaide Festival in the early 1960s to the great series of revisionist revivals that has been going on in the Australian theatre for many years since that time. For more than forty-five years, most of our boldest and brightest young directors have wanted to cut their teeth on White, and if this is not the sign of a playwright who has become a classic, then I don't know what is. No other Australian dramatist has been so often revisited theatrically in so many different ways.' (Introduction)
 
(p. 139-148)
“Some of the Doors of the House Have Never Been Seen Open” : Poetic Habitation and Civil Space in Patrick White’s Early Drama, Brigitta Olubas , single work criticism
'Patrick White wrote plays throughout his career, and the ongoing success in Australia of productions of his dramatic work signals something of the longevity of his public profile. For theatre historians and reviewers, White's theatre writing provides, more-over, a point of genesis, signalling recurrent moments of vitality in his overall literary output, as well as in the national theatre more generally. The observation by David Marr in his programme notes to the 2007 Sydney Theatre Company production of The Season at Sarsparilla that "the stage was White's first love"' recalls a point made three decades earlier by H.G. Kippax in his introduction to White's first collection of plays. Kippax noted further that the production of White's early plays in 1933 by the Sydney Playhouse predated the publication of his early verse The Ploughman and Other Poems, by two years, and that his post-World War II literary productions were likewise prefaced by theatrical productions —Return to Abyssinia (1946) — in advance of literary publication — The Aunt's Story (1948). The invocation across these diverse contexts of figures of cultural and authorial genesis through theatrical performance, while of course somewhat qualified, in that none of these early plays survives, nonetheless animates a sense of the public occasion of Patrick White, a sense of the persistent importance of the public dimension of his work that subtends his larger significance in the development of the national theatre and, through this, of the national culture, in the second half of the last century. (Introduction)
 
(p. 149-162)
Against the Androgyne as Humanist He(te)ro : Patrick White’s Queering of the Platonic Myth, Graham Henry Smith , single work criticism
'This essay rejects the trope of androgyny as it has been taken up within the ambit of a specifically Western ideal of unity and resolution, one that Marjorie Garber refers to as reflecting -the androgyne as humanist hero."' Androgyny, a term which combines the Greek roots andro (male) and gyne (female), is, of course, most famously depicted in Plato's Symposium. Aristophancs explains to the assembled company that originally there were three sexes, not only two, in the form of circular beings comprising man/man, woman/woman and man/woman...' (Introduction)
(p. 163-182)
Patrick White, 1994–2009, Lorraine Burdett , single work bibliography (p. 183-210)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Amsterdam,
      c
      Netherlands,
      c
      Western Europe, Europe,
      :
      New York (City), New York (State),
      c
      United States of America (USA),
      c
      Americas,
      :
      Rodopi ,
      2010 .
      Extent: xvii, 218p.p.
      ISBN: 9789042028494

Works about this Work

Untitled Nicholas Birns , 2012 single work review
— Appears in: Reviews in Australian Studies , vol. 6 no. 4 2012;

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Untitled Elizabeth Webby , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , May vol. 26 no. 1 2011; (p. 105-109)

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
The Solid Mandala and Patrick White’s Late Modernity Nicholas Birns , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Transnational Literature , November vol. 4 no. 1 2011;
'This essay contends that the Australian novelist Patrick White (1912-1990) presents, in his novel The Solid Mandala (1966), a prototypical evocation of late modernity that indicates precisely why and how it was different from the neoliberal and postmodern era that succeeded it. Late modernity is currently emerging as a historical period, though still a nascent and contested one. Robert Hassan speaks of the 1950-1970 era as a period which, in its 'Fordist' mode of production maintained a certain conformity yet held off the commoditisation of later neoliberalism's 'network-driven capitalism'. This anchors the sense of 'late modernity,' that will operate in this essay, though my sense of the period also follows on definitions of the term established, in very different contexts, by Edward Lucie-Smith and Tyrus Miller.' (Author's introduction)
Continentally Shelved Charles Lock , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , April no. 330 2011; (p. 10-11)

— Review of Patrick White Within the Western Literary Tradition John Beston , 2010 single work criticism ; Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays Edited by Elizabeth McMahon and Brigitta Olubas Georgina Loveridge , 2010 single work review
— Appears in: JASAL , no. 10 2010;

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays Edited by Elizabeth McMahon and Brigitta Olubas Georgina Loveridge , 2010 single work review
— Appears in: JASAL , no. 10 2010;

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Continentally Shelved Charles Lock , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , April no. 330 2011; (p. 10-11)

— Review of Patrick White Within the Western Literary Tradition John Beston , 2010 single work criticism ; Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Untitled Elizabeth Webby , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Literary Studies , May vol. 26 no. 1 2011; (p. 105-109)

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
Untitled Nicholas Birns , 2012 single work review
— Appears in: Reviews in Australian Studies , vol. 6 no. 4 2012;

— Review of Remembering Patrick White : Contemporary Critical Essays 2010 selected work criticism
The Solid Mandala and Patrick White’s Late Modernity Nicholas Birns , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Transnational Literature , November vol. 4 no. 1 2011;
'This essay contends that the Australian novelist Patrick White (1912-1990) presents, in his novel The Solid Mandala (1966), a prototypical evocation of late modernity that indicates precisely why and how it was different from the neoliberal and postmodern era that succeeded it. Late modernity is currently emerging as a historical period, though still a nascent and contested one. Robert Hassan speaks of the 1950-1970 era as a period which, in its 'Fordist' mode of production maintained a certain conformity yet held off the commoditisation of later neoliberalism's 'network-driven capitalism'. This anchors the sense of 'late modernity,' that will operate in this essay, though my sense of the period also follows on definitions of the term established, in very different contexts, by Edward Lucie-Smith and Tyrus Miller.' (Author's introduction)
Last amended 23 Jul 2019 08:56:08
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