Australian Books and Authors in the American Marketplace 1840s–1940s explores how Australian writers and their works were present in the United States before the mid twentieth century to a much greater degree than previously acknowledged. Drawing on fresh archival research and combining the approaches of literary criticism, print culture studies and book history, David Carter and Roger Osborne demonstrate that Australian writing was transnational long before the contemporary period. In mapping Australian literature’s connections to British and US markets, their research challenges established understandings of national, imperial and world literatures. Carter and Osborne examine how Australian authors, editors and publishers engaged productively with their American counterparts, and how American readers and reviewers responded to Australian works. They consider the role played by British publishers and agents in taking Australian writing to America, and how the international circulation of new literary genres created new opportunities for novelists to move between markets. Some of these writers, such as Christina Stead and Patrick White, remain household names; others who once enjoyed international fame, such as Dale Collins and Alice Grant Rosman, have been largely forgotten. The story of their books in America reveals how culture, commerce and copyright law interacted to create both opportunities and obstacles for Australian writers.
In recent years, Australian literature has experienced a revival of interest both domestically and internationally. The increasing prominence of work by writers like Christos Tsiolkas, heightened through television and film adaptation, as well as the award of major international prizes to writers like Richard Flanagan, and the development of new, high-profile prizes like the Stella Prize, have all reinvigorated interest in Australian literature both at home and abroad. This Companion emerges as a part of that reinvigoration, considering anew the history and development of Australian literature and its key themes, as well as tracing the transition of the field through those critical debates. It considers works of Australian literature on their own terms, as well as positioning them in their critical and historical context and their ethical and interactive position in the public and private spheres. With an emphasis on literature’s responsibilities, this book claims Australian literary studies as a field uniquely positioned to expose the ways in which literature engages with, produces and is produced by its context, provoking a critical re-evaluation of the concept of the relationship between national literatures, cultures, and histories, and the social function of literary texts.
Eleanor Dark (1901–85) is one of Australia’s most innovative 20th-century writers. Her extensive oeuvre includes ten novels published from the early 1930s to the late 1950s, and represents a significant engagement with global modernity from a unique position within settler culture. Yet Dark’s contribution to 20th-century literature has been undervalued in the fields of both Australian literary studies and world literature. Although two biographies have been written about her life, there has been no book-length critical study of her writing published since 1976. Middlebrow Modernism counters this neglect by providing the first full-length critical survey of Eleanor Dark’s writing to be published in over four decades. Focusing on the fiction that Dark produced during the interwar years and reading this in the context of her larger body of work, this book positions Dark’s writing as important to the study of Australian literature and global modernism. Melinda Cooper argues that Dark’s fiction exhibits a distinctive aesthetic of middlebrow modernism, which blends attributes of literary modernism with popular fiction. It seeks to mediate and reconcile apparent binaries: modernism and mass culture; liberal humanism and experimental aesthetics; settler society and international modernity. The term middlebrow modernism also captures the way Dark negotiated cosmopolitan commitments with more place-based attachments to nation and local community within the mid-20th century. Middlebrow Modernism posits that Dark’s fiction and the broader phenomenon of Australian modernism offer essential case studies for larger debates operating within global modernist and world literature studies, providing perspectives these fields might otherwise miss.
This is the first book-length study of Sydney-based Horwitz Publications, the largest and most dynamic Australian pulp publisher to emerge after World War II. Although best known for its cheaply produced, sometimes luridly packaged, softcover books, Horwitz Publications played a far larger role in mainstream Australian publishing than has been so far recognised, particularly in the expansion of the paperback from the late 1950s onwards. Horwitz Publications, Pulp Fiction and the Rise of the Australian Paperback examines the authorship, production, marketing and distribution of Horwitz pulp paperbacks. It includes ground-breaking material on the conditions of creative labour: the writers, artists and editors involved in the production of Horwitz pulp. The book also explores how Horwitz pulp paperbacks acted as a local conduit for the global modern: the ideas, sensations, fascinations, technologies, and people that came crashing into the Australian consciousness in the 1950s and 1960s.
The Cambridge Companion to the Australian Novel provides a clear, lively, and accessible account of the novel in Australia. The chapters of this book survey significant issues and developments in the Australian novel, offer historical and conceptual frameworks, and provide vivid and original examples of what reading an Australian novel looks like in practice. The book begins with novels by literary visitors to Australia and concludes with those by refugees. In between, the reader encounters the Australian novel in its splendid contradictoriness, from nineteenth-century settler fiction by women writers through to literary images of the Anthropocene, from sexuality in the novels of Patrick White to Waanyi writer Alexis Wright's call for a sovereign First Nations literature. This book is an invitation to students, instructors, and researchers alike to expand and broaden their knowledge of the complex histories and vital present of the Australian novel.
Booker Prize winner and Living National Treasure, Thomas Keneally still divides critical opinion: he is both a morally challenging stylist and a commercial hack, a wise commentator on society and a garrulous leprechaun. Such judgements are located in the cultural politics of Australia but also linked to ideas about what a literary career should look like. ‘Thomas Keneally’s Career and the Literary Machine’ charts Keneally’s production and reception across his three major markets, noting clashes between national interests and international reach, continuity of themes and variety of topics, settings and genres, the writer’s interests and the publishers’ push to create a brand, celebrity fame and literary reputation, and the tussle around fiction, history, allegory and the middlebrow. Keneally is seen as playing a long game across several events rather than honing one specialist skill, a strategy that has sustained for more than 50 years his ambition to earn a living from writing.
Since its publication in 1903, Joseph Furphy’s Such is Life has become established as an Australian classic. But which version of the novel is the authoritative text, and what does its history reveal about Australian cultural life? From Furphy’s handwritten manuscript through numerous editions, a controversial abridgement for the British market (condemned by A.D. Hope as a “mutilation”), and periods of obscurity and rediscovery, the text has been reshaped and repackaged by many hands. Furphy’s first editors at the Bulletin diluted his socialist message and “corrected” his Australian slang to create a more marketable book. Later, literary players including Vance and Nettie Palmer, Miles Franklin, Kate Baker and Angus & Robertson all took an interest in how Furphy’s work should be published. In a fascinating piece of literary detective work, Osborne traces the book’s journey and shows how economic and cultural forces helped to shape the novel we read today.
As the publishing, film and music industries are dominated by Big Media conglomerates, there is often recourse to simplistic ideological and conspiratorial readings of industry dynamics. Copyright, Creativity, Big Media & Cultural Value: Incorporating the Author explains why copyright is much more than a creator’s private property right or a mechanism through which corporations control cultural production and influence mass consumption choices. The volume is grounded in extensive, painstakingly detailed and colourful original archival research into business histories of major successful artists including Conan Doyle, Hall Caine, Margaret Atwood, Dame Nellie Melba, Radiohead and Banksy, and the industries and genres that grew up around their activities. Chapters address big questions about how copyright generates income and how distributions of profits are allocated in the publishing, film and music industries. It includes discussion of the creation of new formats, the interplay between old media and new technologies, international copyright reform and cross-industry relations. Copyright, Creativity, Big Media & Cultural Value is a wide-ranging and important resource for students and practitioners of law and policy, media studies, cultural studies and literary history.
Popular romance fiction constitutes the largest segment of the global book market. Bringing together an international group of scholars, The Routledge Research Companion to Popular Romance Fiction offers a ground-breaking exploration of this global genre and its remarkable readership. In recognition of the diversity of the form, the Companion provides a history of the genre, an overview of disciplinary approaches to studying romance fiction, and critical analyses of important subgenres, themes, and topics. It also highlights new and understudied avenues of inquiry for future research in this vibrant and still-emerging field. The first systematic, comprehensive resource on romance fiction, this Companion will be invaluable to students and scholars, and accessible to romance readers.
Contributions by Beverly Lyon Clark, Christine Doyle, Gregory Eiselein, John Matteson, Joel Myerson, Sandra Harbert Petrulionis, Anne K. Phillips, Daniel Shealy, and Roberta Seelinger Trites As the golden age of children’s literature dawned in America in the mid-1860s, Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, a work that many scholars view as one of the first realistic novels for young people, soon became a classic. Never out of print, Alcott’s tale of four sisters growing up in nineteenth-century New England has been published in more than fifty countries around the world. Over the century and a half since its publication, the novel has grown into a cherished book for girls and boys alike. Readers as diverse as Carson McCullers, Gloria Steinem, Theodore Roosevelt, Patti Smith, and J. K. Rowling have declared it a favorite. Little Women at 150, a collection of eight original essays by scholars whose research and writings over the past twenty years have helped elevate Alcott’s reputation in the academic community, examines anew the enduring popularity of the novel and explores the myriad complexities of Alcott’s most famous work. Examining key issues about philanthropy, class, feminism, Marxism, Transcendentalism, canon formation, domestic labor, marriage, and Australian literature, Little Women at 150 presents new perspectives on one of the United States’ most enduring novels. A historical and critical introduction discusses the creation and publication of the novel, briefly traces the scholarly critical response, and demonstrates how these new essays show us that Little Women and its illustrations still have riches to reveal to its readers in the twenty-first century.