ASAL2020 POETRY READINGS

Sponsored by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASAL2020 Poetry Reading Series will bring together poets from across the country for four nights of virtual readings. Zoom links will be made available 24 hours before each event, and updated daily at 5pm-ish. To receive the links for these events, please register for your Poetry Reading Series ticket at the ASAL2020 conference website: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/asal2020-virtual-conference-tickets-96573196029.

#1 Tuesday, 30 June, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Adelle Sefton-Rowston with Melanie Mununggurr-Williams, Johanna Bell, Sandra Thibodeaux, Parker Black, Fred Van’t Sand

#2 Wednesday, 1 July, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Michael Farrell with AJ Carruthers, Amelia Dale, Lucy Dougan and Toby Fitch

#3 Thursday, 2 July, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Susan Hawthorne with Merlinda Bobis, berni jansson, Robyn Rowland, Patricia Sykes and Lizz Murphy

#4 Friday, 3 July, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Lachlan Brown with Gareth Jenkins, Aidan Coleman, Sarah Day, Sarah Pearce and Claire Albrecht

ASAL2020 POETRY READING #1

Tuesday, 30 June, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Adelle Sefton-Rowston with Melanie Mununggurr-Williams, Johanna Bell, Sandra Thibodeaux, Parker Black, Fred Van’t Sand

Sponsored by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASAL2020 Poetry Reading Series will bring together poets from across the country for four nights of virtual readings. Zoom links will be made available 24 hours before each event. To receive the links for these events, please register for the Poetry Reading Series at the ASAL2020 conference website: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/asal2020-virtual-conference-tickets-96573196029

Melanie Mununggurr-Williams is the 2018 Australian Poetry Slam Champion and a Djapu writer from Yirrkala in East Arnhem Land. She is one of about 4600 speakers of Yolnu-Matha and a mentor for young Indigenous women in programs across the Northern Territory. Melanie spent the last decade working with families, young people and children involved with juvenile justice and department of children and families. Her writing is often focused around family, place and her identity as an Aboriginal woman. 

Johanna Bell is an award-winning author, producer and Churchill Fellow.  Interested in combating voice poverty and geographic privilege, she often collaborates with other artists to elevate new stories from the north. Her work has been published in Overland, Meanjin, Griffith Review and Australian Poetry.  

Dr Sandra Thibodeaux is a playwright and poet who has published four collections of poetry, with the latest being Dirty H2O (Mulla Mulla Press). Sandra has written over a dozen plays that have been staged as part of festivals across Indonesia and Australia, and broadcast on Radio National. Her latest plays include The Age of BonesA Smoke Social, Mr Takahashi (and other falling secrets) and The Lion Tamer. Sandra has twice won the NT Literary Awards for her plays, and has been short-listed for both the Patrick White and Griffin playwriting awards. In 2011, Sandra was Australian Poetry’s Poet-in-Residence. 

Parker Black is a poet and playwright living between Garrmalang (Darwin) and Mparntwe (Alice Springs). In 2018, she had her poetry shortlisted in the Northern Territory Literary Awards and in 2019, won the Darwin Fringe Festival’s Poetry Slam. Black has had her work published in the Australian Poetry AnthologyCordite and Flycatcher

Fred van’t Sand; Bowser boy, cleaner, student, teacher, life model, house painter, dog walker, market manager, customs officer, board member, father, first aider, host, actor, poet, DJ, radio announcer, friend, pilot, chronicler of times and so much more. Enjoy, Embrace, Elucidate. Cheers Fred. Poem selection;’ Sorry’, ‘Sometimes the ideas come so fas’t and ‘for lovers to do that’.

ASAL2020 POETRY READING #2

Wednesday, 1 July, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Michael Farrell with AJ Carruthers, Amelia Dale, Lucy Dougan and Toby Fitch

Sponsored by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASAL2020 Poetry Reading Series will bring together poets from across the country for four nights of virtual readings. Zoom links will be made available 24 hours before each event. To receive the links for these events, please register for the Poetry Reading Series at the ASAL2020 conference website: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/asal2020-virtual-conference-tickets-96573196029

Michael Farrell is the author of Writing Australian Unsettlement: Modes of Poetic Invention 1796-1945 (Palgrave Macmillan). His I Love Poetry won the Judith Wright Calanthe Queensland Literary Award in 2018. Michael’s latest book is Family Trees (Giramondo).

A.J. Carruthers (also ajCarruthers) is an Australian-born poet, performer, prophet, and literary theorist, author of the academic book Stave Sightings: Notational Experiments in North American Long Poems (Palgrave 2017), and two volumes of a long poem, Axis Book 1: Areal (Vagabond 2014) and Axis Book 2 (Vagabond 2019). He teaches literature and literary criticism within the School of Languages and Literature at SUIBE, China.

Amelia Dale is lecturer at the School of Languages and Literature and the Australian Studies Centre at Shanghai University of International Business and Economics. She is the author of the academic book The Printed Reader: Gender, Quixotism, and Textual Bodies in Eighteenth-Century Britain (Bucknell UP, 2019), and poetry works including Constitution (Inken Publisch, 2017); Goalf (Hysterically Real, 2016) and Tractosaur (Troll Thread, 2015). She is chief editor of SOd Press, interviews editor of Rabbit Poetry Journal and formerly was poetry reviews editor of Southerly Journal. She received her PhD, in eighteenth-century literature, from the University of Sydney in 2015.

Lucy Dougan’s books include Memory Shell (5 Islands Press), White Clay (Giramondo), Meanderthals (Web del Sol) and The Guardians (Giramondo) which won the Western Australian Premier’s Book Award for poetry. With Tim Dolin, she is co-editor of The Collected Poems of Fay Zwicky (UWAP, 2017). She works at Curtin University for the China Australia Writing Centre.

Toby Fitch is poetry editor of Overland, a sessional academic in creative writing at the University of Sydney, and organiser of AVANT GAGA and the poetry night at Sappho Books in Glebe. His most recent book of poems is Where Only the Sky had Hung Before (Vagabond Press 2019) and he is currently working on a manuscript called Sydney Spleen. He lives on unceded Gadigal land.

ASAL2020 POETRY READING #3

Thursday, 2 July, 7pm – 8pm (AEST)

Susan Hawthorne with Merlinda Bobis, berni jansson, Robyn Rowland, Patricia Sykes and Lizz Murphy

Sponsored by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASAL2020 Poetry Reading Series will bring together poets from across the country for four nights of virtual readings. Zoom links will be made available 24 hours before each event. To receive the links for these events, please register for the Poetry Reading Series at the ASAL2020 conference website: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/asal2020-virtual-conference-tickets-96573196029

Dr Susan Hawthorne co-founded Spinifex Press with Renate Klein in 1991. From 2012 to 2016 she was elected the English Language Co-ordinator of the International Alliance of Independent Publishers, based in Paris. She is the author/editor of 27 books including Bibliodiversity: A Manifesto for Independent Publishing which has been translated into Arabic, French, Spanish, German and Czech languages and available in 20 territories across Africa, The Middle East, Latin America and Europe. She is also a novelist and poet; her most recent books in these areas are Dark Matters: A Novel (2017) and The Sacking of the Muses (2019). She has taught creative writing and publishing studies at Victoria University and James Cook University supervising MAs and PhDs. She is Adjunct Professor in the School of Arts and Social Sciences at JCU, Townsville. She has won a number of awards for writing and publishing.

Robyn Rowland has 14 books, 11 of poetry, most recently Under This Saffron Sun – Safran Güneşin Altında, Turkish translations by Mehmet Ali Çelikel, (Knocknarone Press, Ireland, 2019); Mosaics from the Map,Doire Press, Ireland (2018) and This Intimate War Gallipoli/Çanakkale 1915 – İçli Dışlı Bir Savaş: Gelibolu/Çanakkale 1915, Turkish translations by Mehmet Ali Çelikel, (FIP, Australia; Bilge Kultur Sanat, 2015; Spinifex Press, 2018) Her poetry appears in national/international journals, over forty anthologies, eight editions of Best Australian Poems. Her work can be viewed on film at the National Irish Poetry Reading Archive, James Joyce Library, UCD, available on YouTube.

Lizz Murphy writes between Binalong NSW and Canberra ACT. Lizz has published thirteen books. Her eight poetry titles include: Shebird and Six Hundred Dollars (PressPress), Walk the Wildly (Picaro/Ginninderra), Stop Your Cryin (Island Press), Two Lips Went Shopping (Spinifex Press). Spinifex Press also published her best-known anthology Wee Girls: Women Writing from an Irish Perspective. She is published in numerous anthologies and journals in Australia and overseas. Lizz is a former Canberra Times Poetry Editor, has worked in regional arts development, arts and publishing. She blogs at A Poet’s Slant lizzmurphypoet.blogspot.com

Award-winning writer Merlinda Bobis has 4 novels, 6 poetry books, a collection of short stories and 9 dramatic works, some of which she performed for stage and radio. She has also published various scholarly papers. Her themes include borders and difference, women and girls, geopolitics and environment, war and memory, migration, and the poetics and politics of care. Her novel, Locust Girl. A Lovesong, received the 2016 Christina Stead Prize for Fiction and the Philippine National Book Award. Her latest poetry collection, Accidents of Composition, was Highly Commended for the 2018 ACT Book of the Year. merlindabobis.com.au

berni m janssen is a poet, in the sense of the early Greek word poiein, ‘maker’. She is a text artist, performer, Creative Director, and facilitator who works solo, and with other artists (sonic, visual, text, performance) to make art. This work appears in many different places and spaces including performance, books, online.

Patricia Sykes is an award-winning poet and a librettist. Her collaborations with composer Liza Lim have been performed in Australia, the UK, Germany, Moscow, Paris and New York. She was Asialink writer in Residence, Malaysia 2006. Her most recent collection is Among the Gone of It, English/Chinese, Flying Island Books, 2017. A song cycle by Andrew Aronowicz, based on her collection The Abbotsord Mysteries (Spinifex Press, 2011)premiered in May 2019. A podcast is forthcoming.

ASAL2020 POETRY READING #4

Friday, 3 July, 7pm–8pm (AEST)

Lachlan Brown with Gareth Jenkins, Aidan Coleman, Sarah Day, Sarah Pearce and Claire Albrecht

Sponsored by the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund, the ASAL2020 Poetry Reading Series will bring together poets from across the country for four nights of virtual readings. Zoom links will be made available 24 hours before each event. To receive the links for these events, please register for the Poetry Reading Series at the ASAL2020 conference website: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/asal2020-virtual-conference-tickets-96573196029

Gareth Jenkins is an independent academic, poet and publisher. His first full collection of poetry, Recipes for the Disaster, was released by 5 Islands Press in 2019. He edited and designed The Toy of the Spirit—the first full length collection of writing by Australia’s greatest Outsider Artist and writer Anthony Mannix, also released in 2019 by Puncher and Wattmann. Over the last 15 years Gareth has published and delivered papers, particularly on the relationship between creativity and madness, at conferences throughout Australia, in Europe and the USA. In 2020 he founded a new press called The Apothecary Archive, specialising in experimental work from around the world. More at: apothecaryarchive.com and theatomicbook.com

Aidan Coleman is a Visiting Research Fellow in the School of Humanities and an Early Career Researcher in the JM Coetzee Centre for Creative Practice at the University of Adelaide. Aidan’s reviews and critical writing have appeared in The Australian, Cordite, Harvard Review Online and TEXT and he is currently writing a biography of the poet John Forbes with assistance from the Australia Council for the Arts and Arts South Australia. His PhD thesis on John Forbes was awarded a University of Adelaide Medal for Doctoral Research.

Sarah Day’s most recent books, Towards Light, and Tempo, (Puncher & Wattmann, 2018/2013) were shortlisted for the Tasmanian Premier’s Literary Awards and the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. The latter also received the Wesley Michelle Wright Prize. Awards for previous work include the Queensland Premier’s Judith Wright ACT and Victoria’s Anne Elder awards. She was poetry editor of Island for seven years. She lives in Hobart where she takes an active interest in Tasmanian environmental politics. Her poetry has been published and translated in a number of countries and set to music in UK and Australia. She is beginning a PhD candidature with UQ.

Sarah Pearce is a poet, editor and academic from Adelaide. Her PhD explored the suffering female body in the works of Emily and Charlotte Brontë from a contemporary feminist perspective. Her creative and scholarly work appears in TEXT, Writing from Below, Meniscus, Aeternum and Outskirts, and her writing interests include the Gothic, queer identity, female embodiment and feminist theory.

Claire Albrecht is writing her PhD in poetry at the University of Newcastle. She was the 2019 Emerging Writers Festival fellow at the State Library of Victoria, and will be a resident at the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, New Mexico in 2021. Claire will also be a Varuna ‘Writing Fire, Writing Drought’ fellow later this year. Her debut chapbook pinky swear was published in 2018.

ASAL2020 Virtual — Update

After ASAL’s decision to cancel the Cairns version of ASAL2020 and begin plans for a virtual program, expressions of interest were sought from accepted presenters to participate in the new format. The call for expressions of interest is now closed, and a new program is currently being devised after a tremendous response from participants. A draft program will be available by the last week of May. This program will include:

  • Live Zoom presentations
  • Pre-recorded 20-minute presentations
  • Pre-recorded 3-minute lightning talks
  • Blog presentations

Information about how to join the conference sessions will be distributed with the program, along with protocols for the management of discussion within each session. This program will run on the same days as the planned Cairns program 30 June – 2 July, but with different scheduling to accommodate viewing of the virtual presentations. Planning for a series of virtual workshops for postgraduates and ECRs is also underway, details of which will be made available with the draft program. A series of pre-recorded poetry readings will also run during the conference.

The change in format has also required decisions to be made about registration and associated costs. Due to the support of Copyright Agency, registration for ASAL2020 Virtual will be free to ASAL members. To check on your membership status, please contact ASAL Secretary Dr Demelza Hall: d.hall@federation.edu.au.

The ASAL2020 Virtual program will be distributed to current ASAL members who have registered for the conference through the conference registration portal.

To help with the planning of the virtual sessions, please click here to register.

Thanks goes to everybody who has continued to support the idea of a virtual conference, and especially to the presenters who have responded to the expressions of interest. ASAL2020 Virtual will be a different experience than previous ASAL conferences, but it promises to be as stimulating as ever.

ASAL2020 to go virtual.

The urgent need to maintain our distance from each other during the COVID-19 pandemic has led the ASAL Executive to make the decision to cancel ASAL2020 as an event held in Cairns from 29 June – 3 July.

However, by reimagining ASAL2020 as a virtual conference to run between 29 June and 10 July, ASAL will continue to provide an opportunity for presenters to share their work and to participate in networking activities. Presenters have been contacted for expressions of interest in presenting at the virtual conference, and a new program will be devised, comprising of:

—Live 20-minute presentations supported by a video-conferencing facility such as Zoom

—Recorded 20-minute presentations to be published on a specified date within the time-frame of the virtual conference

—Recorded 3-minute lightning papers to be published on a specified date within the time-frame of the virtual conference

—Digital posters accompanied by a recorded 3-minute discussion, published on the ASAL2020 website

—Short written versions of presentation published on the ASAL2020 website

—Twitter panels/symposiums

A draft program for the virtual conference will be released by 31 May. The program will also include additional workshops and mentoring sessions for ASAL members.

We will contact those who have already registered for the Cairns event in order to arrange refunds, and, in due course, advise you of new registration arrangements for the virtual event.

Thank you for your interest in ASAL2020. We hope that you will continue to participate in any way possible.

Best wishes,

Roger  Osborne, ASAL2020 Convenor

Update: ASAL2020 and COVID-19

The ASAL2020 organising committee is keeping a close watch on developments in the international efforts to control the spread of COVID-19. In consultation with the ASAL Executive, we are taking into account the Australian Government’s recent advice to limit gatherings to under 500 people, and we are conscious of the Government’s advice to limit non-essential travel, especially for critical workforces.

Over the last week, we have seen many international conferences, sporting events, and arts and music festivals cancelled. But, as we advised presenters this week, the ASAL2020 program committee will continue to plan for this year’s conference. Until further notice, we remain committed to delivering this important event in the calendar of studies in Australian literature.

Nevertheless, the health, well-being and safety of ASAL2020 attendees and their families is of the utmost priority. We continue to closely monitor health and safety updates and recommendations issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the relevant health authorities in Australia. We are also concerned for the small businesses in Cairns that will benefit from the conference, particularly our caterer, who must manage staffing and food preparation in uncertain times.   

The ASAL2020 program committee will meet this week to discuss the program and the challenges posed by the pandemic. We will develop an onsite readiness and reaction plan. Expect increased hand sanitizer stations, educational materials on ways to minimize risk, and more. We will continue to post updates on planning as information is available.

We are aware that other Australian universities are providing information on the pandemic and are now restricting both domestic and international travel. We will advise presenters and the ASAL membership as soon as possible if circumstances change and decisions have to be made about postponing, cancelling, or reimagining ASAL2020. But, for now, we look forward to seeing you in Cairns on 29 June.

ECR and Postgrad Bursaries

Thanks to the support of the Copyright Agency and ASAL funds, ASAL2020 will offer a limited number of travel bursaries valued at up to $750.

When do I apply?

If you are a Postgrad or ECR, you should apply for the Bursary before the conference starts, but after your paper has been accepted. Please take note of any specific advice and deadlines for applications by checking the conference website (https://asal2020.com/). The funding pool is not unlimited, so it is best to apply as soon as you can after acceptance of your paper, and before the conference begins. Conference conveners will advise you by email if/when your application is approved/successful.

How do I apply?

Email your request for a bursary to the conveners of ASAL2020. In your email, please provide the following details:

  • Name, home institution
  • Title of paper accepted for conference
  • List of costed items for which you are seeking support
  • Details of any funding for conference travel you’re receiving from your home institution
  • For postgrads — Name and email of your supervisor (if possible, you should also attach or forward a supporting email from your supervisor confirming that you are without institutional funding, or else indicating what funding you are receiving).
  • For ECRs — a declaration that indicates your ECR status and confirms that you are without institutional funding, or else indicating what funding you are receiving. For questions about your ASAL ECR status, please contact the ECR reps: https://www.asal.org.au/postgraduate-and-early-career-researchers/

When are the funds provided? 

Once the conference has ended, you can seek reimbursement for approved costs. Just send an email with scans of your receipts to the ASAL Treasurer.

Website, Keynotes and CFP

Welcome to the website for ASAL2020, the annual conference of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature, to be held at James Cook University (Cairns) from 29 June to 2 July 2020.

The call for papers and panels is open and proposals are due by 31 January 2020. We are seeking 20-minute papers or proposals for panels that address the challenges of reading and writing Australian literature in the past and the present, and welcome proposals from literary studies and practice-led research. For more details, please see the CFP page.

The program committee is pleased to announce that Professor Anita Heiss will deliver the Barry Andrews Address, Professor Nicole Moore will deliver the Dorothy Green Lecture, and Dr Kate Noske will deliver the ASAL ECR Keynote. These speakers bring a breadth of experience in scholarship, writing, editing, and teaching that draws literary studies and creative writing together in ways that will set the tone for the broader program of papers and panels.

ASAL’s primary mission is ‘To encourage and stimulate the writing and reading of Australian literature and the study of and research into Australian literature and Australian literary culture.’ By extending the dialogue between the disciplines of literary studies and creative writing within the field of Australian literature – in all its forms – this conference aims to make a long-lasting contribution to the Association’s mission. Discover the quality and diversity of Australian writing at AustLit: https://www.austlit.edu.au/.

Stay tuned for more news to come. Conference updates will be posted here and circulated throughout ASAL’s various social media channels. This blog will also provide a space for guest bloggers to discuss their experiences before during and after the conference. Please let the conference convenor know if you would like to contribute.