Lionel Fogarty was born in 1958 at Barambah, now known as Cherbourg Aboriginal Reserve, in the South Burnett region of southern Queensland. Since the 1970s he has been active in many of the political struggles, particularly in southern Queensland, from the Land Rights movement, to setting up Aboriginal health and legal services, to the issue of black deaths in custody – Fogarty's own brother, Daniel, died in police custody in 1993. His first collection of poetry, Kargun, was published in 1980, and he has published eight further collections, as well as a children's book, Booyooburra, a traditional Wakka Wakka story. Fogarty has also travelled widely in the United States and Europe. An unabashedly political poet, Fogarty's poetry employs Aboriginal English in innovative ways, challenging readers to reconfigure cultural assumptions. He is a poet who has opened up the new space of black Australian post-surrealist writing and done much to reformulate our understanding of poetic discourse and its roles in both black and white communities.
States of Poetry
Further reading and links
'The Poetic Politics of Lionel Fogarty', poetry reading on the Australian Poetry website
Lionel Fogarty's author page on the Red Room Company website
Lionel Fogarty's author page on Poetry International website