An early exchange of Christmas presents leads to a violent outcome for a young drunk couple. A schoolboy finds himself at the centre of a cruel playground bullying ritual. A teenage girl lies to her mother about a sexual assault involving her little sister. A father ruins grand final day for the son who idolises him.
The thirteen stories in Luke Johnson’s debut collection do not shy away from life’s brutalities. Nor do they overlook those moments of genuine intimacy, humour and revelation that imbue the tragic with purpose and with pathos. Set in regional Australia in an era before mobile phones and the internet, these stories will remind you of who and what we are beneath all the cool digital interfaces: animals, burning with ferocity for a mouthful of life’s flesh.
In Incantations, Subhash Jaireth responds through a series of short prose pieces to portraits of famous and everyday Australians in an attempt to rethink the role of place, identity and the self. It is an ekphrastic exercise, in that it reinterprets an artwork in writing, but it is also a lyrical exploration of what art can mean: its power to move, to know, and to feel.
In April 2020, amidst the global pandemic of Covid-19, the Australasian Association of Writing Programs (AAWP), the peak academic body representing the discipline of Creative Writing in Australasia, sent a call for contributions to The Incompleteness Book (2020: Recent Work Press). The storytellers and poets were asked to respond to the prompt: the incompleteness of human experience. The second edition represents the impetus to capture a composite picture of what writers made of this prompt, one year on. Contributors were asked to consider what they had discarded; what they coveted more closely than ever; whether they had learned something, about themselves or more broadly. In this thought-provoking collection contributors were asked to write back and think forward. The result is a multi-focal expression of: Where to, from here?
Told through a series triptychs—each with a poem, a work of essayistic prose and a photographic image—White Clouds Blue Rain captures discrete moments of life with precise yet unpredictable detail. Taking cues from artists, writers and architects, Driscoll gently binds the everyday to the abstract, moving from the dual vantage points of an apartment block in Melbourne and a former family home in North Queensland out to questions of form, shape and aesthetics as well as the act of making and our relationships with people, objects and physical space. There’s a spaciousness and glasslike stillness to this work that carefully diffuses meaning, never allowing it to settle.
This latest project of ‘authorised theft’ amongst poetic friends sees them raiding the 19th century for inspiration—across a variety of artforms. But C19 here is not just a past century; it is also the terrible present moment in which we live, and in which this remarkable collaborative work has been written.
In each of the stories in this collection, the authors examine the conundrum and contradiction of human experience through carefully crafted narrative detail. The brevity of short-form fiction makes it an apt vessel for capturing the haunting incompleteness of human experience. Memorable short stories resonate because they are attentive to specificities and particularities: to detail as it relates to a distinct focalising consciousness. The authors in this collection employ narrative detail with intuitive hands and minds, fashioning an apprehended fictional world, an abstracted reality that resonates beyond the final lines of text. Each story here is marked by the urgency of idea, captured as raw sensory data. Collectively, they are attentive to the crucial relationship between idiosyncratic voice and sharply rendered detail, creating an experiential world that ‘feels real’ to the reader.
The Incompleteness Book is the result of a call for contributions to the theme: the incompleteness of human experience. The call was distributed in April 2020, amidst the global pandemic of COVID-19. The collection takes an interest in the relationship between the haunting incompleteness of human experience and short form writing. This, together with the unforeseen challenges of COVID-19, as well as the lure of coming together as writers, is the impetus for the book. The submissions are aimed at capturing our individual and collective experience as a composite picture. The contributions were collected in just nine days.
Story Ground is a place of story, of attentiveness and support. A place where stories are held safely and dearly, and are shared bravely—the very foundation of Community and Culture.
Story Ground: The anthology is a collection of prose writing, poetry and storytelling deriving from a series of workshops based on traditional Indigenous practices of storytelling and knowledge. The authors come from far flung places. Their writings here are breathtakingly powerful. This anthology is for the keeping and for returning to—a collection that you will find yourself reading and embracing, time and again.
The emerging writers whose stories grace this collection engage in the play of symbolic action and detail, capturing sadness and imperfection through an apprehended fictional world—an abstracted reality. The stories resonate because they are intensely focused upon very particular forms of enquiry: Why do the characters see what they see? How do they know what they know? Perhaps it is this—the focus upon a very particular form of sensory apprehension—that lies at the heart of short stories that resonate beyond the final lines of text.
In The Uncommon Feast, Eileen Chong gives us a collection of poetry, essays and recipes that remark on how food has shaped her life, her way of understanding her world, and the world of connections with those around her. For Chong, food is an act of sharing and an act of generosity. Here, she shares with you a collection of her poems on food, essays that chart the meaning of food and poetry in her life, and even a secret recipe or two. Includes illustrations by Colin Cassidy.
The French social philosopher Pierre Bourdieu is known for the richness and sophistication of his extensive writings.
In these selected dialogues, under taken with Michael Grenfell in the 1980s and 1990s, he is in a conversational mood. Here, he reflects on both his life and the formation and significance of his key concepts and perspectives.
Through the concise analysis of interviews with 76 poets from around the world, Dr Monica Carroll and Distinguished Professor Jen Webb investigate the context of poetic excellence. Creativity in Context examines these poets’ formative moments, the role that key individuals and institutions play in their lives, and how they locate themselves within communities. The result is a fascinating picture of the rich context within which poetic creativity takes place.
In this essay Professor Ronald Schleifer makes the case that the humanities train us in systematic attention to experience – and in particular, attention to linguistic and narrative knowledge – and he shows how this kind of attention can change the fundamental quality and outcome of interactions in the domain of medicine. This essay is a cogent argument for the interdisciplinary value of the humanities.
In this first of the new Pragmatics of Art series, French sociologist, the late Pierre Bourdieu, is captured in conversation with Art School students about the role of art, artistic consumption and production, the role of value and taste in art, and the role of the artist in contemporary configurations of culture. It has been translated by renowned Bourdieu scholar, Michael Grenfell who provides an introduction contextualising Bourdieu’s thought and broad interests, particularly in matters of culture.
Once thought lost, this new edition revives Strange’s bizarre experimental manuscript for contemporary audiences. Allegedly written in a weekend and inspired by a paratext from Clarice Lispector, Notes to the Reader is a collection of twenty-one calls to readers from books and authors long forgotten.