Writing & Society Research Centre seminar series

Event Name
Writing & Society Research Centre seminar series
15 October 2021
11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Address (Room): Online via Zoom


In 2016 the Sydney Review of Books established a fellowship program for emerging critics with the support of the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund. To mark five years of the SRB-CA Emerging Critics Fellowships, the SRB and WSRC present a seminar on critical practice and Australian literature. The seminar will feature three past fellowship recipients, Madeleine Gray, Ali Jane Smith and Cher Tan, who will reflect on their experience as critics and the material circumstances that condition critical writing. Chaired by SRB editor Catriona Menzies-Pike, the discussion will cover how these writers have emerged as critics – where they emerged from, and where they are heading – before turning to some of the contradictions and conflicts carried by the figure of the emerging critic. After all, to name a critic as emerging is to suggest a narrative of intellectual and creative progress. Are emerging critics, practitioners understood to be at the beginning of a linear trajectory, granted any special concessions by editors and audiences? What are the consequences of apprentice errors and pitfalls, especially in a precarious cultural economy? The narrative of the emerging critic is also one of rupture and innovation; the emerging critic portends new ideas and fresh perspectives. How receptive are Australian editors and audiences to critical innovation? And finally, if being an emerging critic marks a beginning, what’s next, both ideally and actually? Chair: Dr Catriona Menzies-Pike, Editor, Sydney Review of Books Madeleine Gray is a writer and critic, who holds a Masters (with Distinction) in English Literature from the University of Oxford. She has previously written for the Lifted Brow, Curve, and the Human Rights Defender. She was a recipient of the 2019 CA-SRB Emerging Critics Fellowship, and of the J B Watt University of Sydney Travelling Scholarship. She is based in Sydney. Ali Jane Smith is a poet and critic. In 2015 her poem ‘Another Literary Life’ was selected as Australian Poetry Journal’s Poem of the Year. She was selected as Southerly Journal’s Monthly Blogger for July 2016. She is the author of a chapbook, Gala, published by the Five Islands Press New Poets Program in 2006. She lives in Wollongong. Cher Tan is an essayist and critic in Birraranga/Melbourne, via Kaurna Yerta/Adelaide and Singapore. Her work has appeared in the Saturday Paper, Kill Your Darlings, Runway Journal, the Lifted Brow and Overland, among others. She is an editor at Liminal magazine and the reviews editor at Meanjin.

Register your RSVP via the web page below and you will be sent the Zoom link.

Web page: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/what-is-an-emerging-critic-tickets-167824803505

Name: Suzanne Gapps


Phone: 0403 699 455

School / Department: Writing & Society Research Centre