"I dreamed of snow today": impediments to settler belonging in Northern Queensland as depicted in a selection of recent fiction

Stockdale, Jacqueline (2010) "I dreamed of snow today": impediments to settler belonging in Northern Queensland as depicted in a selection of recent fiction. etropic: electronic journal of studies in the tropics, 9. pp. 1-10.

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[Extract]In 2001, Geoffrey Blainey argued that “a high proportion” of non-Indigenous Australians have developed a sense of place, “of feeling at home” in their country, that “has in part been created or manufactured”. Though historians have contributed to this, he says, “Painters and writers have done most to create it” as “They tried to provide a sense of belonging, and a sense of continuity and history” (Boyer Lecture n. pag.). Several recent Australian novels - each with some historical basis - are set in Queensland’s north and offer contemporary perceptions of the area’s history from settlement to the end of the twentieth century. Published the year after the Mabo Decision, and Prime Minister Paul Keating’s “Redfern Speech”, David Malouf’s 1993 novel, Remembering Babylon, is a fitting point to commence exploring depictions of settler society’s relations to northern Queensland. Three other novels included in this study are Alex Miller’s Journey to the Stone Country (2003), and Landscape of Farewell (2007), along with Gordon Smith’s Dalrymple (2006). In these stories northern settlers struggle to cope - physically, psychologically and emotionally. The difficulties for settlers in developing an attachment to north Queensland, and their sometimes extreme responses, illustrate the powerful interaction between place, belonging and identity.

Item ID: 16525
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1448-2940
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Produced as part of the AustLit: “Writing the Tropical North” project, funded by JCU and ARC LIEF.

Date Deposited: 05 May 2011 10:28
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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