Subject details

  • Topics
    • Introduction
    • Australian literature in the 1930s
    • Australian literature and the Second World War
    • The Patrick White phenomenon
    • The ecological crisis
    • Conclusion
  • Study resources
    • Instructional Methods
      • Disscusion forum/Discussion Board
      • Online assignment submission
    • Online Materials
      • Printable format materials
      • Resources and Links

This subject examines the inter-relations between literary writing and reading, cultural institutions and political movements and ideologies in Australian history. We are interested in the ways in which literary intellectuals (novelists, poets, journalists, critics, editors, etc.) have been influenced by social and political movements, and how they have used literary and other forms of writing as ways of engaging in political struggles and cultural debates.

The subject thus encourages consideration of how literary texts are written and read in different historical and institutional contexts. In addition to learning about major cultural and political events and developments in Australia in the periods examined, you will be developing skills in the 'social reading' of literary texts. The main focus will be on reading and discussing an array of interesting and stimulating works of literature, and finding ways of relating them meaningfully to their social contexts.

  • Assignment 1 - Non-Invigilated Exam (40%)
  • Assignment 2 - Comparitive (35%)
  • Assignment 3 - Online Discussion (25%)

Textbooks are subject to change within the academic year. Students are advised to purchase their books no earlier than one to two months before the start of a subject

No eligibility requirements

Special requirements

No special requirements

Explore Australian writing between 1930 and the late 1990s in the context of the three great national crises of those years: The Great Depression; The Second World War; and The Ecological Crisis. In this subject you read a selection of novels, poetry and short stories by writers including Eleanor Dark, Patrick White, Kenneth Slessor, John Manifold and Katharine Susannah Prichard, Thea Astley and David Malouf. This subject examines the inter-relations between literary writing and reading, cultural institutions and political movements and ideologies in Australian history from the 1930s to 1990.

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