Jeff Sparrow (ed.): Overland 200

Show and tell

Patrick Allington


Overland 200
edited by Jeff Sparrow
Overland, $14.95 pb, 120 pp, 00307416


From Menzies to Gillard, from the Cold War to Pacific solutions, the history of Overland magazine offers a leftist version of post-World War II Australian political, cultural and literary life. This issue of Overland is its two hundredth. As Jeff Sparrow, the current Editor, points out, survival is an achievement: ‘The “little magazine” is a peculiar animal. The life cycle of the species generally follows a predictable pattern: birth (usually marked by the ritual issuing of manifestos) and rapid growth, followed by financial crisis, paralysis and death, a cycle that typically unfolds within the span of six months or so.’ Sparrow, one of Australia’s more penetrating commentators, might have granted himself more space to discuss the future of Overland, and, more broadly, to reflect on challenges facing activists who challenge the assumption that capitalism can save – is saving – the world.

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Patrick Allington

Patrick Allington

Patrick Allington was the recipient of the inaugural ABR Patrons’ Fellowship, worth $5000. His novel, Figurehead (Black Inc. 2009), was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Literary Award. His short fiction and book criticism appears in Australian newspapers, magazines, and journals, including regularly in ABR.

Published in November 2010 no. 326

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