Representations of men and women of the bush in Australian fiction

Ham, R 2007, Representations of men and women of the bush in Australian fiction, Masters by Research, Creative Media, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Name Description MIMEType Size
Ham.pdf Exegesis application/pdf 1.24MB
Title Representations of men and women of the bush in Australian fiction
Author(s) Ham, R
Year 2007
Abstract At the heart of this exegesis is the city-bush gap and the rivalry and stereotypes that gap has generated. I acknowledge how and why our national identity evolved from the writing of the 1890s but I argue that most current artists, particularly novelists, have failed to incorporate the ongoing cultural, societal and industrial changes that have occurred since, particularly in the last thirty years. I assert that the majority of artists still refer to and draw inspiration from established, inaccurate myths and stereotypes rather than the bush and Australian characters of today. Through examining three texts, Kate Grenville's The Idea of Perfection (Picador, Sydney, 1999), Christos Tsiolkas's Loaded (Random House, Sydney, 1995) and Silences Long Gone (Picador, Sydney, 1998) by Anson Cameron, I also point out how most artists in general have failed to keep pace with changes in the bush city cross-culture. My exegesis attempts to give an account of some deficiencies in contemporary Australian literature. In the creative component of this project, Summer at Mount Hope (Duffy and Snellgrove, Sydney, 2005), I write, as did Anson Cameron in his book, Silences Long Gone, (Pan Macmillan, 1998) of a bush (in 1894) where city and bush rely on each other and technology pushes into the bush uniting city and bush, thus enhancing the economy, the cross cultural interdependence and advancing the commonality between the two. I replace stereotypical characters with less predictable characters whose traits sit easily in either bush or city culture and skew the Traditionalist role of bush and city.
Degree Masters by Research
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Creative Media
Keyword(s) City-bush cross culture
Contemporary Australian fiction
Cultural changes
Inaccuracies
Character misrepresentation
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