War Poetry: Myth as De-formation and Re-formation


In his Introduction to Shadows from Wire Geoff Page remarks that 'rarely since the 1914-18 war ended has Australian interest in it been higher', and he continues by citing a number of recent films and books which have both expressed and stimulated that interest. Shadows from Wire, Benton's Conviction, his recently published novel, and a further anthology of Australian war poems, Clubbing of the Gunfire edited by Chris Wallace-Crabbe and Peter Pierce, are all further evidence of this interest. One intriguing characteristic of this interest is the difficulty those who evince it have in accounting for it. As Page puts it, 'For reasons not easily explained the 1914-18 war and the states of mind of those engaged in it have increased greatly in significance for Australians in recent years.'

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Published 1 October 1985 in Volume 12 No. 2. Subjects: Australian war literature, Myth, Nationalism, War poetry, Women - Literary portrayal, World War I.

Cite as: Taylor, Andrew. ‘War Poetry: Myth as De-formation and Re-formation.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 12, no. 2, 1985, doi: 10.20314/als.450da28873.