Issue Details: First known date: 2010... 2010 The Quality of 'Life' : Dorothy Hewett's Literary Criticism 1945-1969
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'Dorothy Hewett's literary criticism engages the questions of canon, genre, style and cultural production that animated her writing life. Her assessment of other writers' work is therefore interesting in and of itself and also powerfully suggestive of the ways in which her own work might be situated, read and re-read. Dorothy Hewett left an impressive archive of non-fiction prose, which variously exhibits the facility and energy evident in Wild Card, and further attests to her generativity across and within a variety of genres. Yet Hewett's critical prose if far from 'wild'. Her literary criticism particularly demonstrates a collected rhetorical understanding of genre and audience. Hewett's criticism presents a direct and intensely personal voice and a marked preference for the categories of the affective and energetic. It is the category of 'life' that her work values, and this notion or topos of 'life' is the centrepiece of her changing and developing views on literature and the literary field.' (Author's abstract)


  • Epigraph: I've discovered that literary critics are very, very suspicious of people who change genres. They think there is something suspect about it. Otherwise you are a Jack-of-all-trades or a Jill-of-all-trades and master or mistress of nothing. Whereas I've never found any difficulty in this really. It just seems natural to me. It's all writing, you know. (Moore 40)

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  • Appears in:
    y JASAL Journal of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature; Common Readers and Cultural Critics Special Issue 2010 Z1717121 2010 periodical issue 2010
Last amended 19 Jun 2017 13:14:34 The Quality of 'Life' : Dorothy Hewett's Literary Criticism 1945-1969AustLit JASAL
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