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Praiseworthy and Harvest Lingo win Queensland Literary Awards

Alexis Wright’s novel Praiseworthy and Lionel Fogarty’s poetry collection Harvest Lingo have both been named winners at the Queensland Literary Awards.

Alexis Wright’s epic novel was presented with the $15,000 University of Queensland Fiction Book Award, and also shortlisted in the Queensland Premier’s Award for a Work of State Significance. The judges said of Praiseworthy:

The great Moana Jackson declared the doctrine of discovery a legal fiction. In  Praiseworthy, farce, satire, tragedy, the colloquial, myth, pun, repetition, elegy, and the epic expose the absurdity of the doctrine and the everyday lies, habits and horrors keeping it in place. Praiseworthy is simply astonishing.

Lionel Fogarty’s collection Harvest Lingo, which has already been shortlisted for the NSW and Victorian Premier’s Literary Award, received the prestigious $15,000 Judith Wright Calanthe Award for a Poetry Collection. The judges said of his book:

Deliberately diverging from the status quo, Harvest Lingo offers a sovereign alternative to standard ways of poetic thinking and reading. Continuing his revolutionary tactic of critique via his personal powerful, poetic language, Lionel Fogarty subverts and disrupts white capitalist structure and its confinement of and lack of knowledge of Indigenous life and culture.  

Several Giramondo titles were also shortlisted in the awards: Shaun Prescott’s Bon and Lesley for fiction, and Michael Farrell’s Googlecholia and Autumn Royal’s The Drama Student for poetry.

Congratulations to all the winners and finalists.