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You people don’t realise what it is you have to sell. ( Illywhacker , 348) W ITH Illywhacker , Carey’s success achieved international dimensions. It was published first in the UK and USA, something of an irony for a novel exposing cultural imperialism. 1 The University of Queensland Press acquired the Australian rights and implemented a wide advertising campaign using international responses as promotion. The effect was to increase Carey’s profile and sales dramatically in Australia and abroad. 2 The novel

in Peter Carey
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5 The Great World Although it carries on with the multiple-worlds orientation, The Great World is more thoroughly a novel of transactions. In Harland’s Half Acre the lines of impact and influence are at times unidirectional: one learns in appreciable detail the effect Knack has on Edna or Frank, but the narration remains silent about how either of these characters impacts upon Knack. The 1990 novel is more scrupulous in demonstrating that change, in the human world, is nearly always a matter of exchange. Australian identity, both individual and national, is

in David Malouf
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III MANIFESTOES Anthologising the nation Since the mid-1990s, I have edited a number of special Australian issues of literary journals from Britain, Canada, and the United States. I have also edited an anthology of contemporary Australian poetry, Landbridge (1999a), and am at present completing a two-volume historical anthology. These projects were very different in orientation from the process of including Australian poetry (and prose) in the many ‘general’ issues of literary journals that I edited over the same period of time, and indeed over the last dozen

in Disclosed poetics

in a broadly drawn economy of bodies lends credence to Taylor’s conviction that Conversations represents the body ‘as the site and origin of a comprehensive identity – both personal and national’.6 The body is the first realm of the proper, ‘the primary metonymy of place’,7 the first place where one always must be if one is to be anywhere else at all. But ‘convicts were no longer British subjects according to law but human property of the Crown’.8 Most convicts transported to Australian penal colonies had offended against property: in other words, their offence

in David Malouf
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Fly Away Peter and Harland’s Half Acre

modes of self-location: he is an Australian landowner (with considerable holdings) and yet one who ‘had been away to school in England and then at Cambridge’ (FAP 3). Birds, one soon learns, are messengers from other worlds: the dollar bird comes ‘down from the Mollucas’, the ‘Sacred Kingfisher’ from Borneo (FAP, 14, 29); sandpipers carry knowledge of ‘northern Asia or Scandanavia’ (FAP, 19) – and of England, and of Australia (FAP, 25). Places of being are spectacularly multiple and discover their relationship through migrations, transfers – innumerable movements to

in David Malouf

projectivism’s corporealisation of history, which has its vanishing point in the genealogical depth of the interiority of the body (individual and collective) and its biophysical and linguistic materialisations, shares a poethical gestalt with Australian ­Aboriginal art. Readings of Olson’s mid-twentieth century revisionism and postmodernism have often focused upon his ambitious, postPoundian reach for a Mesoamerican, Mayan symbolic archaeology as a restorative to what he perceived to be a (postwar) crisis in Western ontology and representability. Between 1949 and the mid

in Contemporary Olson
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6 Remembering Babylon In addition to being the cornerstone of Malouf’s reputation, Remembering Babylon brings into focus the specifically postcolonial aspects of the author’s vision and thus provides an important perspective on the work that precedes it. The previously established elements of Malouf’s vision are now organised around questions of postcoloniality and nationhood: what is a nation, and how is it constituted; more particularly, what is Australia, and how did this erstwhile collection of settler colonies remake itself as a modern nation? Both Harland

in David Malouf
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significant areas are: American imperialism and culture; capitalism; power and authority; and gender. America has a spectral fascination for many Australian writers, as Don Anderson has pointed out. He usefully quotes Jean Baudrillard to help explain this: ‘whatever one thinks of the arrogance of the dollar or the multinationals, it is this culture which, the world over, fascinates those very people who suffer most at its hands, and it does so through the deep, insane conviction that it has made all their dreams come true.’ 9 In ‘American Dreams

in Peter Carey
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awards. It became a well-received film in 1985, the year of Mad Max III , winning best picture, director and screenplay awards from the Australian Film Institute, as well as being shown as the official Australian entry at the Cannes Film festival. In Bliss , the hippy capitalists of ‘War Crimes’ are replaced by the more conventional scenario of hippies versus capitalists, but with a complex sense of the contradictions which cross these seemingly opposed cultures as Harry Joy is caught between the two worlds. Harry is an innocent, a ‘Good

in Peter Carey

context as well – of all languages. In the specific case of Australia and Australian language, pastoral is twofold – a construct to recreate European, specifically English, rural power-structures, the reconfiguring of ‘home’ in an alien landscape. Such language-usage comes out of a politics of oppression and degradation of indigeneity. A new pastoral must come out of this that re-examines what constitutes the rural space and how that is mediated. Another concern is gender – is the pastoral a patriarchal tool? Its traditions certainly suggest so, but some of the most

in Disclosed poetics