Hazel Rowley on Christina Stead

Hazel Rowley pops the big questions in the first two paragraphs of her piece in "The Australian".

Why aren't Australians proud of the writers and artists who have sprung from our soil? The French treat theirs as heroes. The Irish love theirs. Even though James Joyce fled from Ireland as a young man and much of his writing is ferociously difficult, you'd be hard put to find a self-respecting Irish soul who hasn't read something by him, and taxi drivers will tell you: "Today is James Joyce's birthday." Christina Stead surely vies with Patrick White for the status of our greatest writer, but most Australians couldn't tell you whether she is dead or alive, let alone name one of her books.
Well, I can tell you she is dead and the name of her best known work is The Man Who Loved Children. I know this because it has been sitting in my To Be Read pile for longer than I care to remember. I'll get to it soon, I promise.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on August 28, 2007 9:33 PM.

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