Stephen Muecke grew up in Newcastle and Melbourne. He graduated from Monash University and continued his studies in Paris. After travelling in Europe and North Africa, he returned to Perth to work on his PhD, a semiotic analysis of oral narratives from the Kimberleys. It was during his research that his friendship with Paddy Roe began.
He has taught at a number of Australian universities, most recently as Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of Technology, Sydney.