The lesson of "The Yellow Sand": Robert Drewe's dissection of "The Good Old Past" in The Drowner and Grace

Ackland, Michael (2006) The lesson of "The Yellow Sand": Robert Drewe's dissection of "The Good Old Past" in The Drowner and Grace. Westerly, 51 ( ). pp. 88-107.

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Abstract

[Extract] Robert Drewe's investment in the past and history is much commented on but not always understood. Its very obviousness, together with the variety of subjects chosen, has deflected attention away from the evolving, subtly changing nature of his response to the historical record. This has, of course, ranged from the adversarial to the nostalgic and elegiac, and a similar diversity characterises the historical sources drawn on for his major fiction, beginning with genocide in Tasmania and Australia's place in the Asia-Pacific region, through the making of national folk-heroes, to an autobiography and stories based on his early life in Perth.⁽ Nevertheless, there are discernible continuities in his writing, as well as attitudes towards history that cause him profound misgivings. The latter were touched on in a talk presented at a number of venues, entitled "Where the Yellow Sand Stops," in which he gently mocked Australians for their attachment to bygone days.

Item ID: 10893
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
ISSN: 0043-342X
Date Deposited: 12 May 2010 05:01
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2005 Literary Studies > 200502 Australian Literature (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Literature) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970119 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of the Creative Arts and Writing @ 100%
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