Touching the edges of cyclones: Thea Astley and the winds of revelation

Spicer, Chrystopher (2018) Touching the edges of cyclones: Thea Astley and the winds of revelation. Queensland Review, 25 (1). pp. 137-148.

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Thea Astley once commented that, 'everybody is living on a cyclonic edge', and that many of her characters were 'always touching on the edges of cyclones'. In Queensland literature, cyclones often appear as tropes of apocalypse: new worlds of person and place are revealed out of the destruction of the old. In Astley's novel A Boat Load of Home Folk (1968), the tempestuous forces of personal cyclones, as well as those of the cyclone destroying the island around them, overtake a group of stranded cruise passengers, and consequently place and person assume unique meanings as the characters try to survive. Although one of her least-known works, A Boat Load of Home Folk is a profound novel of human experience in which Astley uses the elemental cyclone as a trope of apocalypse that is both an instrument of destruction and a catalyst of revelation.

Item ID: 64215
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2049-7792
Keywords: Thea Astley; A Boat Load of Home Folk;cyclone; island;storm; novel; Australian literature; Queensland literature; trope; human experience, apocalypse;people; place;catalyst; revelation;
Copyright Information: Copyright © The Author(s) 2018
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2021 04:29
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2005 Literary Studies > 200502 Australian Literature (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Literature) @ 60%
20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200211 Postcolonial Studies @ 30%
04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0401 Atmospheric Sciences > 040107 Meteorology @ 10%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950203 Languages and Literature @ 40%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9602 Atmosphere and Weather > 960203 Weather @ 20%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 40%
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