John Forbes in the Archive

14 June 2019

John Forbes in the Archive

CCCW partners, AustLit and the Fryer Library, are pleased to announce an exciting digital monograph that has resulted from the 2017 Fryer Library Fellowship.  Dr Duncan Hose was the 2017 Fellow, and his project centred on the life and work of Australian poet John Forbes. The Fryer holds Forbes’ papers, and Dr Hose has teamed up with AustLit to produce a digital monograph drawing on the collection: a curated exhibition of key works, ‘doodlings’, photographs and interviews entitled ‘Forbeserama : The Virtual Arcade of John Forbes,’ and a peer-reviewed article, ‘The Pagan Sermons of John Forbes.’

The project adds to AustLit’s impressive bank of digital exhibitions of Australian writersJohn Forbes across a range of mediums, and brings into the public sphere “fragments of an historical epoch in Australian poetry and figments of a person that are made present to cultivate a curiosity in both.” As Dr Hose and AustLit state in the introduction to the virtual arcade, “[w]e take an interest in what works behind the public persona of the poet and the official exposition of a Collected Works, by making available a few texts to season an appetite for an exceptional figure in the discoursing of colonial Australia and the constitutional flux of its mythmaking for the 'self' and for the Idea of Australia.”

You can access the essay and exhibition via the following link, where it is publicly available beyond AustLit’s usual subscriber barrier:

For further information about the Fryer Fellowship, or the library’s other awards and fellowship opportunities, visit: