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  • 'The biennial NSW Premier's Prize for Literary Scholarship ($15,000) is made to an outstanding book, CD ROM or DVD which presents an original and convincing perspective on one or more works of classical world literature. For the purpose of this prize, 'classical world literature' refers to works of acknowledged excellence and historical renown which were first published prior to 1950 in any language, literary or cultural tradition.

    To be eligible, the nominated work must be written by a living Australian scholar and it must focus primarily on analyzing, understanding, and rendering classical literary texts accessible to a contemporary readership. Annotated re-editions of classical texts may be considered if they can be shown to be the result of intense literary scholarship and if they present the original texts in a new light.'

    (Source: NSW Premier's Arts Awards website,

Latest Winners / Recipients

Year: 2010

winner y separately published work icon Networked Language : Culture and History in Australian Poetry Philip Mead , North Melbourne : Australian Scholarly Publishing , 2008 Z1519945 2008 single work criticism 'Networked Language: Culture and History in Australian Poetry is the result of a fascination with poetic language and with the networks of culture and history within which it lives. The language of poetry, which may appear obscure or annoyingly uncommunicative, is nevertheless always meaningful in the time and place of its creation. This study presents new ways of understanding Australian poetry, drawing on an equal fascination with the artifice of poetry and the complexity of culture. It is about the way poetry changes in relation to its social, political and historical contexts, the way poetic communities and the readerships of poetry have changed through history, and continue to change in the present.' (Publisher's blurb)

Year: 2004

winner y separately published work icon Broken Song : T. G. H. Strehlow and Aboriginal Possession Barry Hill , Milsons Point London : Knopf , 2002 Z980577 2002 single work biography

'A group of men…chanting with the enthusiasm that made them forget age & weakness & becoming young again in spirit…the rising and falling of the chant melody, like the breathing that gives us life – what an unforgettable scene!’ Thus wrote T. G. H. Strehlow in 1935, as he began his life work, Songs of Central Australia, acclaimed as one of the great books of world literature. Prize-winning poet and historian, Barry Hill, with exclusive access to Strehlow’s diaries, has written a major work about the troubled man who grew up on the Hermannsburg mission, became the first Patrol Officer of Central Australia, called himself the ‘last of the Aranda’, and compulsively collected secret-sacred objects and images. Broken Song straddles a century of Australian history, from the race wars on the frontier to the modern era of Aboriginal land rights, tracking Strehlow’s creative and tragic life in translation.' (Source: Reading Australia website)