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Issue Details: First known date: 2011... 2011 An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

Manning Clark was a complex, demanding and brilliant man. Mark McKenna's compelling biography of this giant of Australia's cultural landscape is informed by his reading of Clark's extensive private letters, journals and diaries - many that have never been read before.

'An Eye for Eternity paints a sweeping portrait of the man who gave Australians the signature account of their own history. It tells of his friendships with Patrick White and Sidney Nolan. It details an urgent and dynamic marriage, ripped apart at times by Clark's constant need for extramarital romantic love. A son who wrote letters to his dead parents. A historian who placed narrative ahead of facts. A believer who flirted with Catholicism. A controversial public figure who marked slights and criticisms with deeply held grudges.

To understand Clark's life is to understand twentieth century Australia. And it raises fundamental questions about the craft of biography. When are letters too personal, comments too hurtful and insights too private to publish? Clark incessantly documented his life - leaving notes to the biographers he knew would pursue his story. He had a deep need to be remembered and this book means he will now be understood in an unforgettable way.' (Publisher's blurb)

Notes

  • Dedication: For Fiona, Siobhan and Claire McKenna
  • Epigraph:
    Come now, let us consider the generations of Man,
    Compound of dust and clay, strengthless,
    Tentative, passing away as leaves in autumn
    Pass, shadows, wingless, forlorn,
    Phantoms deathbound, a dream.

    -Aristophanes, The Birds

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

    • Carlton North, Parkville - Carlton area, Melbourne - North, Melbourne, Victoria,: Melbourne University Press , 2011 .
      image of person or book cover 5425138368191435523.jpg
      This image has been sourced from online.
      Extent: 793p.
      Description: illus., ports
      Note/s:
      • Includes bibliographical references and index
      ISBN: 9780522856170 (hbk.)

Other Formats

  • Also large print.

Works about this Work

Archival Poetics : Writing History from the Fragments Camilla Nelson , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: TEXT Special Issue Website Series , April no. 28 2015;
'This paper examines ‘archival poetics’ in contemporary history and fiction writing, with a focus on Mark McKenna’s An eye for eternity: The life of Manning Clark, Megan Marshall’s Margaret Fuller: A new American life and Kim Scott’s Benang, from the heart. It investigates the ways in which the authors of these works move away from the forensic imaginary embodied in a certain kind of historiography’s approach to the archive, to create a more personal, powerful and situated kind of history writing. It argues that these works suggest that history is less about the sublime chaos of the past – which cannot be narrated without duplicity, damage or violence – than how we engage the past, which is, on reflection, an entirely different thing.' (Publication summary)
Country and Lives : Australian Biography and Its History Melanie Nolan , 2015 single work criticism
— Appears in: Cercles , no. 35 2015;
'There have been attempts to relate national characteristics “by reference to climate, habitat and soil and investing the collective subject with psychological attributes” for over two millennia. More recently historians of modern nationalism developed elaborate typologies often citing Martin Heidegger’s arguments that “the being of the human finds its essence in the being of place — the belonging together of being and topos” [MALPAS 2012 : 5-6]. And yet the challenge to the ontological connection between self and place, what Jeff Malpas describes as the “topological analysis of self and identity”, has a long philosophical tradition, too. This debate over experience, biography and nation has implications for historians who have raised empirical questions about the development of collective sensibilities over time among recent emigrant peoples, their physical peculiarities, behaviourial quirks and emergent national character. In this paper I consider the role that biography writing played in the construction of an Australian national identity geared to what Pierre Nora famously termed as the “roman national”, or the collective discourse on the history of the nation and its place in the world. I argue that Australian historians played a significant role in the history of biograpy writing and, related to it, the debate over collective Australian identity.' (Introduction)
An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark by Mark McKenna Ged Martin , 2013 single work review
— Appears in: Reviews in Australian Studies , vol. 7 no. 4 2013;

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Review : An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Brendan Somes , 2012 single work review
— Appears in: Archives and Manuscripts , vol. 40 no. 2 2012; (p. 113-114)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Eighty Thousand Dollar Literary Prizes Definitely Something to Write Home About Gia Metherell , 2012 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 24 July 2012; (p. 5)
The Long History of Manning Clark Ross Fitzgerald , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 30 April - 1 May 2011; (p. 18-19)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Variations on this Subject Humphrey McQueen , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 14 May 2011; (p. 21)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Diarist of a Somebody Jim Davidson , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: The Saturday Age , 28 May 2011; (p. 24)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Historian Who Played his Parts Michael Sexton , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 11-12 June 2011; (p. 34-35)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
A Life of Historical Drama Daphne Guinness , 2011 single work review
— Appears in: The Sun-Herald , 26 June 2011; (p. 6)

— Review of An Eye for Eternity : The Life of Manning Clark Mark McKenna , 2011 single work biography
Manning Clark Andrew Clark , 2011 single work correspondence
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 7- 8 May 2011; (p. 15)
Boy, Can He Tell a Story Fran Metcalf , 2011 single work column
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 7 September 2011; (p. 22)
Rich Pickings for a Happy Historian Stephen Romei , 2011 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 7 September 2011; (p. 10)
On Reading Mark McKenna's Biography of Manning Clark Nicholas Gruen , 2011 2011 single work essay
— Appears in: Inside Story , August 2011;
'Manning Clark went on a grand quest, writes Nicholas Gruen. But perhaps it was the journey rather than the arrival that mattered' (Editor's abstract)
Before Manning Clark J. S. Gregory , 2012 single work correspondence
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , February no. 338 2012; (p. 2)
Last amended 22 May 2015 12:42:04
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