Hidden Author

Letters to the Editor - August 2001

August 2001, no. 233 01 August 2001
Better off without him Dear Editor, James Griffin, in his effort to rehabilitate John Wren (ABR, June 2001), attacks me and other historians. Stuart Macintyre has replied strongly; and Manning Clark, the main target, is unfortunately dead. My turn now. Griffin refers to a book by me and two co-authors, Doc Evatt (1994), and says that ten letters from Evatt to Wren were ‘made available’ for ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor - July 2001

July 2001, no. 232 01 July 2001
James Griffin and John Wren Dear Editor, Some of your readers will be familiar with the problem. You set aside a few days to get to the National Library to pursue a research project. You obtain the manuscripts, order the material in the Petherick Room, and settle down to uninterrupted industry, when an avuncular bore with too much time on his hands buttonholes you and bangs on about his own proj ... (read more)

Open Page with Carmel Bird

March 2010, no. 319 01 March 2010
Why do you write? It seems to be the only way I can make sense of things. I am often surprised that everybody doesn’t feel like this. It is such a profound thrill to work with fiction and to see the patterns emerge, to feel the rhythm of the story as it develops. Are you a vivid dreamer? There’s a thing that happens – I am asleep, but I seem to be awake watching a full colour dramatisatio ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – August 1991

August 1991, no. 133 01 August 1991
Dear Editor, Caroline Lurie (ABR No. 131) cited four common criticisms of deconstruction. I think a more important reason is the danger deconstruction poses to the privileged position of the author as the source of one or multiple meanings for a text. It is significant to note that it is mostly the authors (both of narrative and critical discourses) who are so upset about deconstruction. It is t ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – June 1991

June 1991, no. 131 01 June 1991
Dear Editor, The Fat Author Replies to Robert Dessaix: The author does not embody Iiterary classification nor does she base her work on literary theory though literary criticism does inform her literary practice. The critical texts on multiculturalism do propose difference and have formed a valid and important part of dialogue in Australian literature. Dessaix truly exploits the multicultural ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – June 2009

June 2009, no. 312 01 June 2009
Letters to the Editor – June 2009
Delights and jolts Dear Editor, ABR is always engaging, even when one disagrees with the thrust or standpoint of particular reviews, but surely the May issue is the most brilliant ever. An edition which has a poet (Peter Rose) reviewing David Malouf’s new novel, Brian Matthews on Henry Lawson, Elizabeth Webby on Xavier Herbert, and Robert Phiddian on Penny Gay’s monograph about Shakespearean ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – October 2006

October 2006, no. 285 01 October 2006
Letters to the Editor – October 2006
Stickers on a rotten apple Dear Editor, In his review of Angela Bennie’s anthology of hostile Australian reviews, Peter Rose is correct when he surmises that ‘we tend to exaggerate the number of severe reviews’ (September 2006). I think that, generally, Australians do not like disagreement; they prefer to ‘keep the peace’, and this is mostly true of our critics also. The really troubl ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – June 1995

June 1995, no. 171 01 June 1995
Letters to the Editor – June 1995
Dear Editor, How disappointing your cover feature on The First Stone turned out to be. I feel very let down by the most mediocre review I’ve read on this most talked-about work. Your former Editor, Rosemary Sorensen, wrote a superb, thought-provoking piece in the Sydney Morning Herald. I expected the review in ABR to be of similar quality. Brian White, Elwood, Vic. (Ed’s reply: You might be ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – July 1995

July 1995, no. 172 01 July 1995
Letters to the Editor – July 1995
Dear Editor, Dr Jenna Mead claims, among other things in her most recent attempt to discredit The First Stone, that I have ‘invented dialogue’ and written ‘hypothetical meetings with imaginary characters’. All the conversations and encounters in the book are documented in detailed, scrupulous notes. This includes my account of a telephone conversation between Dr Mead and me, which she wou ... (read more)

Letters to the Editor – February 2009

February 2009, no. 308 01 February 2009
Letters to the Editor – February 2009
The past is in Scotland Dear Editor, Christina Hill’s review of Peter Goldsworthy’s latest novel, Everything I Knew (November 2008), seems sure-footed in both its negative assessment of an ‘overwrought, undisciplined’ work and its appreciation of the novel’s compositional play, both intricate and subversive, with L.P. Hartley’s The Go-Between. It makes no mention, however, of the nov ... (read more)