Does Creative Writing Belong in the Academy?By Carol-Anne Croker. Carol-annecroker.com.au
“...The order which [the work of art] professes is merelyan imaginary order, projected onto disorder, thefictive resolution of ideological conflicts, aresolution so precarious that it is obvious only in thevery letter of the text where incoherence andincompleteness burst forth. It is no longer a questionof defects but of indefensible informers... the workderives its form from this incompleteness whichenables us to identify the presence of a conflict atits borders. In the defect of the work is articulated anew truth...” Peter Mackerey . p.103
Pertinent letter to the Editor yesterday.> Any paradigm-shifting technology, such as the telephone, radio, television and now the Internet, wears a Janus face. Their evolving use and impact on society is entirely dependent on unpredictable was society chooses to embrace these new capabilities, no matter how exuberant men like Bell, Edison, Sarnoff and Steve Jobs [in response to previous Mush-brain Legacy- letters Oct 12th] ,ay have been.> The concept likely saw it‟s finest expression in the words of news legend Edward R. Murrow in television‟s early days: “ This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes and it can even inspire. But it can do son only to the extent that humans are determined to use it to those ends. Otherwise it is merely lights and wires in a box”. > Michael Lennick, Toronto. Letter Oct 13th, 2011
Feminist fiction making> The second chapter locates my writing within the contemporary market, i.e, popular women‟s fiction. This chapter reflects on the idea that popular women‟s fiction is often dismissively labelled as Chick Lit. I am seeking to unpack the hidden value systems and ideology operating as objective genre classification.> I am endeavouring to mobilise the term Chick Lit as a subversive and disruptive term, and not that associated with post-feminist backlash. Integral to this is the notions of sexuality and power.> Who is watching?> Who is doing?> Who is being watched and done unto?> Why?
Feminist fiction making> The third chapter based upon my Conference presentations is looking at the notions of high and low culture, literary and pulp fiction.> This chapter necessitates an examination of the Australian literary market.> Who is published and by whom?> What is the content?> What is the genre?> What iconography is being utlised?> How is Australia and „Australianness‟ represented in our fiction?> Is our fiction for a globalised market or a national one, and does this matter?> How?
I am a pedant for recognition of the creatives notjust the business men Let’s not forget the other “garage guru” Steve WozniakAntonio Meucci
What is the Academy? University of Bologna 1088, still leading the “quality globalization discourse in through the Bologna agreement, June 1999 Or is it an “Oxbridge vision”?Limkokwing University, Malaysia ?
Who are the academics? > Hard Science Experts > Experts in Disciplinary Fields > Engaging teachers (which brings a question, how much learning is the responsibility of the contemporary student? > The great thinkers and philosopher Dons in their quiet cloistered thinking spaces? > The „Free Marketeers‟ and „instrumental‟ IndustryPoetLaureate of focused academics?Toronto, O > The artist or poet in residence?ntario(Toronto) > The public intellectual? > The academic researcher/ publisher? Stelarc
Thus the overall contention of forthcoming paper I contend that I am wear all the “hats” of the C21st century academic and we Creative Writers have an important role INSIDE the Academy, and always will have. It‟s what is done with, and to us that matters! And to our Disciplines… our students, scholars , clients, consumers or customers!
Feminist fiction making> Gandolfo cites Zavarzadah & Morton , 1994: 87 Theory as Resistance: politics and culture after post-structuralism. The Guildford Press. NY & London.> So as a feminist writing fiction my intentionality is always political. It is subjective, grounded in constructions of self:> self as woman,> self as thinker,> self as writer> and self as researcher.> Thus, the or me as subject is always in process. I am the subject being constructed throughout my PhD.
Feminist fiction making> Gandolfo uses Écriture feminine (Cixous 1975:p.351) to articulate her intentionality in her novel Swimming.> The intentionality [and I would contend Gandolfo‟s politics] is an “attempt to articulate that which is actively silenced in the dominant masculine realms of experience”…> Thus feminist fictionmaking can interrogate that which is taboo.> One in the realm of the taboo, many structures and systems are challenged . Thus writing taboo subjects within the Academy is a subversive activity.> Gandolfo‟s taboo subject in her novel is childlessness; the mis- functioning womb, the “killer womb” which then constructs her female subject as deviant. She calls this writing in the wild zone. Gandolfo. 2008.p.142
Feminist fiction making> This brings me directly to my artefact and my intentionality. Two and one half years ago when I began this journey I wanted to interrogate the position of the author/creator in relation to the text.> I wanted to cause disruption (for the reader) in the text, to challenge the device of the omniscient third person narrator with the inference that the author is situated outside the text, and the authorial voice is given dominance.> If I had chosen to write memoir or using auto-ethnography I needed to firmly position myself as author and subject within and outside the text.> This would necessitate positioning my work in the world of the real. These characters and events actually existed outside the text in a past, or at least in memory constructed in the present. This would have required Ethics clearance to write the living.
Lastly about my own work : Feminist fiction making. AmI am artist practitioner researcher? Do I belong here?> Thus my „factional novel‟ features the lives of three women, friends living in Melbourne circa 1974, 1984, and 1994.> Each character is to a degree „mad‟ , „delusional‟, or in other ways… socially deviant. They live around and within the „night- world of the theatre‟., a place where deviance has a „natural home‟.> The three selected narrative times, allow us to reflect on what is considered „normal‟ for women in this time and of the characters ages, late teens-early twenties, thirties and then finally forties.> Why these times of life?> I turn to notions of female archetypes within traditional narratives. [ I am sure that you will be familiar with these , as you were with Mark’s rhymes yesterday.]