The Asian Australian migrant experience in Australian literature, 1965-1995

Catherine Patricia Bennett

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    [Truncated] This thesis provides the first sustained exploration of representations of "Asian" migrant experience in Australian literature from 1965 to 1995. Since the publication of Mena Abdullah's and Ray Mathew's collection of short stories The Time of the Peacock(1965), the number of texts which address the Asian migrant experience in Australia has increased significantly, especially in the 1980s and early to mid-1990s. The thesis examines aspects of this developing field in the context of Australian literary discourse about "Asia" and international literature about Asian migrants in "Western" countries.

    Primary consideration is given to texts according to the range and
    depth of their literary treatment of aspects of the experience of first
    generation "Asian" migrants. These texts have been selected from the work
    of Yasmine Gooneratne, Ee Tiang Hong, Sudesh Mishra, Satendra Nandan,,
    Beth Yahp, Dewi Anggraeni, Don'o Kim, Alex Miller and Brian Castro.
    Many other texts are discussed in less detail. The countries from which
    migrant characters' transmuted memories and experiences are drawn
    include India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Fiji, Hong Kong and
    China. A principal contention is that the literary representations of Asia in
    these texts have been shaped not only by the legacy of European Orientalism
    but by the specific construction of the Asian as Other in Australian society.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • The University of Western Australia
    Publication statusUnpublished - 1995

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