As I take my first steps into trying to understand the place of place writing in Australia I find there is a lot of discussion out there about what constitutes this relatively new genre in Australian literature. Although the tradition of ‘nature writing’ is strong in North America, it is far less defined here. I want to bring together as much of the conversation on this topic as I can gather from various sources in an attempt to get a more complete and broader view. This review by Charlotte Wood of A Place on Earth: Nature Writing in Australia, an anthology edited by Mark Tredinnick, not only talks about the essays included but also cites leading writers, Pete Hay, Eric Rolls, Patrice Newell and Mark Tredinnick, speaking about their take on the literature of place.
Read Charlotte Wood’s review here:
I’m quite surprised that there is not much literature on a topic I thought would be covered quite well in Australia. It is strange, considering the diversity of our landscape and the depth of our talent.
Hi Alex, I agree with you. I’m sure there is a lot of literature of place in Australian writing, but it hasn’t come together as a genre. Which is why I was motivated to start this blog with the aim of finding out more about what does exist in that field. I think Pete Hay sums it up quite well in his comment: ‘To say there’s no tradition of place/nature writing in Australia is not to say that we have neglected the natural world in our writing- it is only to say that there is no literary genre specifically devoted to these themes as there is in North America.’
If you find any resources that will add to an understanding of literature of place in Australia I’d love to hear about them. cheers, Lyn