AustLit logo
Issue Details: First known date: 2014... 2014 "Why Raise Them to Die so Young?" : The Aesthetics of Fatalism in The Tall Man
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Chloe Hooper’s The Tall Man (2008) covers the circumstances surrounding the death in custody of Palm Island man Moordinyi. It has been praised for avoiding the codes of reporting that frame Indigenous Australians negatively, such as violent threats to the social order. In the mode of book-length literary journalism, Hooper places the events surrounding Moordinyi’s death within a broader context of dispossession and colonial violence. A stated aim of literary journalism is to engage ‘Other subjectivities’ in order to achieve a deeper understanding of perspective that cannot be accommodated in the typical news cycle. If this is so, it is important to identify how the indigenous subject position has been constituted in this text. Using tools of framing analysis, this paper will illustrate how another typical and negative frame organises the text. The Tall Man deploys a ‘fatalist’ frame which tends to position indigenous people as ill-destined victims. Given the text’s ‘literary’ credentials, which carry with them a degree of cultural authority, it is important to consciously draw out these elements which reinforce a sense of hopelessness, and which tend to mirror the kinds of unequal social relations which the text itself sets out to challenge.' (Publication abstract)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon JASAL Country vol. 14 no. 3 2014 7916868 2014 periodical issue

    The BlackWords Symposium, held in October 2012, celebrated the fifth anniversary of the establishment of BlackWords, the AustLit-supported project recording information about, and research into, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers and storytellers. The symposium showcased the exciting state of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander creative writing and storytelling across all forms, contemporary scholarship on Indigenous writing, alongside programs such as the State Library of Queensland’s black&write! project, which supports writers’ fellowships, editing mentorships, and a trainee editor program for professional development for Indigenous editors. But really, the event was a celebration of the sort of thinking, the sort of resistance, and the re-writing of history that is evident in the epigraph to this introduction. ' (Source: Kilner, Kerry and Minter, Peter, JASAL Vol 14. No. 3, 2014: 1)

Last amended 19 Jan 2017 09:59:17 "Why Raise Them to Die so Young?" : The Aesthetics of Fatalism in The Tall Mansmall AustLit logo JASAL