Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

The Role of the Counter-Colonial Novel in the 21st Century

Amanda Johnson.

This paper will explore the representation of indigeneity in millennial historical novels, with a particular focus on the work of Australian novelists, Peter Carey and Kim Scott. In an Australian context, novels that may be considered aspirationally post-colonial have shifted away from earlier expressions of romanticized authenticity and expository identity politics, although the production of these modes is still very active in an increasingly conservative Australian political context. Increasingly, literary historical fiction is looking to the polemical opportunities of historiographic metafiction and textual mimicry as a way of evoking a disjunctive sense of lost pasts. This paper will reflect on the contemporary forms ‘deployed’ by post-colonial writers in order to speak back to the hegemonic colonial culture and the way in which these writers play with the oppressive legacies enshrined in the language of the colonial archive.


Amanda Johnson  (Australia)

Department of English with Cultural Studies.
The University of Melbourne

  • Counter-Colonial Novel
  • 21st Century

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)