Yet this seems at odds with an independent impulse, with autonomy as a political and authorial subject position as possibly enabled by the Harrison quote early on. This is, of course, not to establish a false binary between voice and assemblage either, or to dismiss a speculative enterprise. Paradox is, of course, not a failing in and of itself, but the implication of such importation is to undermine the importance of the local.
Carlton, After Hours: Poetry Readings
It might appear global, but it is possibly a colonised manoeuvre. There is a lot of Australian literary criticism in the archive and reading against the paradigmatic straw man grain might have enabled a different perspective.
As it stands one can find in Clement Semmler or Vincent Buckley or others, a complicated way of reading that might not be as settled as Farrell makes out. This is supported by the lack of discussion of the Australian field in general. To take only genocide studies what of important work by Attwood, Reynolds, Tatz ?
This framing is despite the fact that Farrell is a very adept close reader. When it comes to the Australian poetry in and of itself there is nuance and insight.
This insight is there too in the section on Ngarla songs. However, in some of the Indigenous sections there is slippage that I think is symptomatic of Australian academic culture more generally I would be interested to know how one can sustain such binarism.
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There are several other moments like this. This collapsing of specificity may, though not necessarily, be read as an ahistoricising gesture, for it collapses important distinctions and arguments.
It flattens the diversity in other words, which people on the inside of the discourse may find important. This is not, though, a defense, in a positivist sense, of linearity, or of cleanliness, just a comment on the need for consistent attentiveness to frame and context. Indeed, the heterodoxies, contradictions and complications of a thing, if it could be said to exist, called Indigenous philosophy remain submerged in Writing Australian Unsettlement precisely because the texts quoted are Freud and Deleuze not Indigenous people themselves as they exist in ethnographic and self-authored texts see Deborah Bird-Rose, Sally Treloyn, Magabala Books Various.
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Michael Farrell - Sydney Review of Books
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