‘Beyond Britain and the Book’: New Publication

Congratulations to former SouthHem postdoctoral fellow, Sarah Galletly, on her new publication, co-authored with Katherine Bode and Carol Hetherington:

‘Beyond Britain and the Book: The Nineteenth-Century Australian Novel Unbound/ed’, in The Cambridge History of the Australian Novel, ed. by David Carter (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2023), pp. 44-62.


The nineteenth-century Australian novel has predominantly been understood in terms of the dominance of Britain, both as the place where most books were published and as the source of literary traditions. But this account presumes and maintains the status of the book as the primary vehicle for transmission of literature, whereas the vast majority of Australian novels were serialised (either before or after book publication) and a great many were only ever published in serial form. A history of the early Australian novel that recognises the vital role of serialisation, as distinct from but also in relation to book publication, brings to light new trends in authorship, publication, circulation and reception. This history also uncovers new Australian novelists as well as previously unrecognised features of their fiction. In particular, a number of literary historians argue that early Australian novelists replicated the legal lie of terra nullius in excluding Aboriginal characters from their fiction. Considering fiction serialised in Australian newspapers indicates that these characters were actually widely depicted and suggests the need for a new account of the relationship between nineteenth-century Australian novels and colonisation.

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