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Rawah Arja and Laurie Duggan shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards

Congratulations to Rawah Arja and Laurie Duggan who have been shortlisted for the 2021 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards for young adult literature and poetry, respectively.

On The F Team the judges said:

Arwa’s characters are unique, flawed and authentic… Rawah’s characters peel back the many layers of Australian society and bares our flaws, our strengths and our heart on the page. They humanise people from marginalised communities who are not widely represented in young adult literature yet make up an important part of the cultural landscape of modern Australia.

The F Team is a powerful, relevant and timely book that questions what it means to be a man, what it means to be human and what it means to be Australian.

On Homer Street the judges said:

Laurie Duggan is very much a poet in the objectivist and minimalist tradition. He is a consistent adaptor of the raw material of the real. Duggan’s poetry is anti-romantic and preoccupied with the mundane. It is a poetry which, to use T.S. Eliot’s phrase, lacks tentacular roots, but it shows a very fine ear and an instinctive and masterly sense of form. Ultimately – and to encompass the great movements of the last century– Duggan’s poetry comes out of the innovations of William Carlos Williams but he is also a poet capable of very adept adaptations of Martial and he has always been attracted to the revisionist music of Pound at his most imagistic and clean. Duggan also shows an affinity for more recent American poets – Charles Olson and Paul Blackburn among them – but he is essentially a geographer of the imagination which is why his poetry is so preoccupied with topography and is such a testament to his skills as a master craftsman. Homer Street exhibits all this virtuosically and with the greatest variety.

Winners of the awards will be announced in December.

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