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The Plains

The Plains: Text Classics

Text Classics

Gerald Murnane

  • awardWinner, Patrick White Literary Award, 1999
  • Introduction by Wayne Macauley

    Twenty years ago, when I first arrived on the plains, I kept my eyes open. I looked for anything in the landscape that seemed to hint at some elaborate meaning behind appearances.

    There is no book in Australian literature like The Plains. In the two decades since its first publication, this haunting novel has earned its status as a classic. A nameless young man arrives on the plains and begins to document the strange and rich culture of the plains families. As his story unfolds, the novel becomes, in the words of Murray Bail, ‘a mirage of landscape, memory, love and literature itself’.

    Reviews online

    Why The Plains is Wayne Macauley’s favourite novel, Weekend Australian

    The case for The Plains as the great Austalian novel, The Conversation  

    Robyn Cresswell's staff pick for the Paris Review

    Gerald Murnane
    About the Author

    Gerald Murnane was born in Melbourne in 1939. He has been a primary teacher, an editor and a university lecturer. His debut novel, Tamarisk Row (1974), was followed by nine other works of fiction, including The Plains(now available as a Text Classic) and most recently A Million Windows. In 1999 Murnane won the Patrick White Award and in 2009 he...

    Read Moreright
    Extent:
    208pp
    Format:
    Paperback
    Text publication date:
    26 April 2012
    First published:
    1982
    ISBN:
    9781921922275
    AU Price:
    $12.95
    Australian
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    Praise for Gerald Murnane
    andThe Plains

    The Plains has that peculiar singularity that can make literature great.’

    ‘Widely regarded as Australia’s greatest living writer, Murnane has long cultivated an air of myth and geographical limit…One could fill a room with a conversation about him.’

    ‘Known for its sharp yet defamiliarizing take on the landscape and an aesthetic of purity historically associated with it, The Plains is uniformly described as a masterpiece of Australian literature. Look closer, though, and it’s a haunting nineteenth-century novel of colonial violence captured inside the machine’s test-pattern image—a distant, unassuming house on the plains.’

    Other editions ofThe Plains