Harman Patil (Editor)

A Dutiful Daughter

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Language  English
Media type  Print
Preceded by  The Survivor
Author  Thomas Keneally
ISBN  0207954232
Country  Australia
3.3/5 Goodreads

Publication date  1971
Pages  183 pp
Originally published  1971
Genre  Fiction
Publisher  Angus & Robertson
Followed by  The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith
Thomas Keneally books  The Survivor, Cut Rate Kingdom, Season in Purgatory, Blood Red - Sister Rose, The Place at Whitton

Complaints of a dutiful daughter


A Dutiful Daughter (1971) is a novel by Australian writer Thomas Keneally.

Contents

Self portrait of a dutiful daughter autoportretul unei fete cuminti official trailer


Story outline

The novel revolves around the story of the Glover family, living on the edges of a swamp somewhere in northern Australia. Barbara is the main character though the novel is told through the eyes of the older brother Damian, recently returned from university.

Critical reception

Hope Hewitt in The Canberra Times was conflicted by the book, finding that this "is a novel about escape, the great theme of Irish novelists; and it demonstrates as clearly as the novels of Edna O'Brien or James Joyce or Samuel Beckett that Ireland holds her rebellious children as tightly and as ambiguously as Barbara is held by her parents. Yet this is not primarily what A Dutiful Daughter is about: it is what occurs to me as I grope for yardsticks by which to define Mr Keneally's powerful and inconclusive fable. Both adjectives are just, I think. It is powerful like everything in Mr Keneally's vivid and individual idiom; and it is inconclusive, the myth advancing by a contrived, not an inevitable volition and the secondary meaning left unconnected."

Angela Carter, reviewing the book for The New York Times, found it "authentically marvelous", noting "This spirited expressionist performance has stylistic affinities with American high Gothic (e.g., Djuna Barnes and Jane Bowles) and thematic ones with James Purdy's parent-child fable, "Malcolm," though Mr. Keneally's tale lacks the stark outlines that characterize the fable as a mode. He offers an embarrassment of symbolic riches, and his prevailing Firbankian archness sometimes effects a tinkling queasiness of tone. One doesn't know whether one is cued in for a belly laugh, a nervous giggle or a shudder of horror."

References

A Dutiful Daughter Wikipedia


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