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Evelyn Araluen, author of Dropbear
Photo by Stuart Spence
Posted 18.05.2020

UQP acquires Evelyn Araluen’s poetry collection

UQP is delighted to announce the acquisition of Evelyn Araluen’s poetry collection Dropbear.

Dropbear is a powerful and original work that examines Araluen’s response to mainstream portrayals of Australian national identity. This striking mix of poems and personal verse essays reflects on the tropes, kitsch and iconography of the nation, and challenges the legitimacy of settler-colonial representations of place and culture.

This is the second book that UQP has acquired from The Wheeler Centre’s inaugural group of 2018 Next Chapter fellows, the first being Adam Thompson’s short story collection, Born Into This. Evelyn Araluen was mentored by writer Tony Birch.

Publisher Aviva Tuffield says:

‘UQP is honoured to be publishing Evelyn Araluen’s debut. Evelyn is one of the most impressive emerging poets and critics writing today, and anyone who has seen her read her work live can attest to the power of her performance skills too. Araluen’s poetry is both deeply personal and informed by rigorous research into the colonial silencing strategies present throughout Australian literature. Dropbear will be an important addition to the list of exceptional poetry collections by First Nations poets that have appeared in recent times.’

Evelyn Araluen says: ‘This manuscript has had a long journey to fruition. The poems in this collection have been written across several years of critical and creative thinking, and I’m proud of myself and the many networks who have supported my work to finally be ready to share.

Dropbear features poems and fragments of verse essay that seek to exorcise the spectres, tropes and debris of empire, and study the love and lore which has allowed us as First Nations people to move towards the radical remembering and reimagining of our sovereignty. It’s an honour to be able to develop this project alongside Ellen van Neerven, who will be my poetry editor, and to join the amazing list of Blak writers who have published with UQP. I hope I do them justice.’

Dropbear will be published in February 2021.