Mongrel Signatures: Reflections on the Work of Mudrooroo

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Annalisa Oboe
Rodopi, 2003 - Literary Criticism - 236 pages
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Mongrel Signatures reviews the Australian writer Mudrooroo's career and deals with central issues of identity, authenticity and truth. After 1996, academics and writers in Australia and around the world endorsed or denied Mudrooroo's Aboriginality after research had dramatically called his Indigenous identity into question. There has also been a long silence among fans of Mudrooroo, who has not commented publicly on his racial belonging.These challenging and lively “reflections” by European and Australian scholars and writers are not meant to discuss whether Mudrooroo can legitimately sign his works with an Aboriginal name (an essentialist and problematic view of identity and authenticity). Instead, they explore how Mudrooroo's writing restages the drama of subjectivity in terms of 'articulation' rather than 'authentication', and ask how we are to read him now in the face of current accusations and the cultural scenario of Aboriginal arts and studies. The contributors - in disagreement or in dialogue - treat questions of identity and representation, reading Mudrooroo's work through the lenses of such perspectives as psychoanalysis, postmodernism, postcolonialism, deconstruction and queer theory. The essays are designed to provoke debate and to dissolve the rigid polarities hitherto characterizing discussion of this highly influential creative artist. Contributors are: Clare Archer-Lean, Maureen Clark, Graziella Englaro, Eva Rask Knudsen, Ruby Langford Ginibi, Maggie Nolan, Annalisa Oboe, Wendy Pearson, Lorenzo Perrona, Cassandra Pybus, Adam Shoemaker, and Gerry Turcotte

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