Amanda Lohrey's Vertigo: an Australian postoral

Blair, Ruth (2015) Amanda Lohrey's Vertigo: an Australian postoral. Australian Literary Studies, 30 2: 117-131. doi:10.20314/als.3eba9632b6

Author Blair, Ruth
Title Amanda Lohrey's Vertigo: an Australian postoral
Formatted title
Amanda Lohrey's Vertigo: an Australian postoral
Journal name Australian Literary Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0004-9697
Publication date 2015-06
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.20314/als.3eba9632b6
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 30
Issue 2
Start page 117
End page 131
Total pages 14
Place of publication Wollongong, NSW Australia
Publisher University of Queensland Press
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Abstract This essay is grounded in William Empson’s view of the pastoral tradition as deeply concerned with social relations – with how we live in the world and with each other – and in the conviction that the pastoral is again appearing as an enabling mode of expression, especially in the midst of the issues of our time that surround human relationships with the non-human world. Amanda Lohrey’s Vertigo: A Pastoral is a work of refined artistry shaped by a genre that continues to be capable of acting in our imaginative life as a powerful mode of storytelling. Much has been written in recent times, particularly in the context of Australian literature, about the idea of an ‘anti-pastoral’, and Terry Gifford’s term ‘post-pastoral’ is applied to the adaptation of the tradition to contemporary environmental concerns. While these are significant lines of thought, I want to argue that they risk preventing us from seeing the deeply rooted value of basic strategies of traditional pastoral. Lohrey’s novella points to ways in which pastoral can usefully be seen as a continuing and adaptable set of ideas. It illustrates, too, the particular energies that are generated when, as Paul Alpers argues in his discussion of pastoral narration, ‘pastoral usages and modes of representation are affected by appearing in prose fiction’ (324).
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Communication and Arts Publications
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Created: Thu, 14 Apr 2016, 10:10:17 EST by Jenny Hearn on behalf of School of Communication and Arts