IV. Conclusion: Telling Terror in Australian Post-9/11 Fiction
Recent Australian terrorism fiction presents itself as surprisingly political as many critics have argued (Gelder and Salzman 240; McCann, Professing 44; O’Reilley 295–296). As this discussion of five post-9/11 novels has shown, it can be read, above all, as a critical assessment of the Howard government at the turn of the century. Terrorism as a theme is linked to questions of immigration politics, to the recognition of Aboriginal land rights and to different forms of racism that reach back to the establishment of Australia as a British settlement. This thematic approach of connecting past and present forms of violence does not only take into account that ‘terrorism’ at first referred to violence emerging from the state, as Janette Turner Hospital’s novels openly address; it can also be seen as a distinctively Australian approach within the range of post-9/11 fiction. Writers of recent terrorism fiction, as David Marr insisted, started “looking Australia in the face” (par. 23) and did actively engage with the re-emergence of nationalist thinking and the racial tensions in the country since the 1990s.
As a consequence of the entanglement of these themes, terror tends to come from within in many Australian post-9/11 novels. At an individual level, it originates from the minds of the characters and is closely connected to complexes of guilt. Mather Hawthorne in Due Preparations for the Plague has to cope not only with the loss of his wife, but also with his own responsibilities of having been involved...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.