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Antipodean Encounters

Australia and the German Literary Imagination 1754-1918


Alan Corkhill

This is the first comprehensive documentation and critical appraisal of the fascinating range of German literary responses to the Fifth Continent prior to colonisation and to watersheds in Australia's social history during the first 130 years of white settlement. The literature surveyed encompasses emigration handbooks, diaries, travelogues, exotic romance, adventure narratives, juvenile fiction and utopian extravaganzas, as well as a modest corpus of devotional, lyric and polemic verse in anthologies, German-Australian newspaper feuilletons and prisoner-of-war weeklies. Featuring among the better known authors are Therese Huber, Amalie Schoppe, Friedrich Gerstäcker, Sophie Wörishöffer, Friedrich Mader and Paul Scheerbart. But equal prominence is given to versatile 'migrant' writers such as Theodor Müller and Stefan von Kotze.
Contents: Fictitious and factual voyages of discovery - Eurocentric visions of the South Land (1794-1843) - Emigration literature (1840-1860) - Adventure fiction (1860-1880) - Australia-watchers at the dawning of nationhood - Münchhausen resurrected - The poetic voice (1890-1918).