Thesis statement (draft March 2012):
This thesis will examine some of the nodes and networks that comprise the “generation of 68”, a label applied to a group of Australian poets who began writing and publishing in the late 1960s and early 1970s, in order to further illuminate this group of poets. I will argue that critical approaches to the work of these poets often overlook the importance of group dynamics on the production, dissemination and reception of these poets work and I will address ways in which nodes and networks can be utilised to address this group and provide a more complex understanding of the formation of the group and their positioning as a “generation”. The label “generation of 68” was crystalised by the publication of John Tranter’s The New Australian Poetry (1979) anthology which contains twenty-four poets Tranter explicitly identifies as “generation of 68” poets; including Robert Adamson, Charles Buckmaster, Michael Dransfield, and John Forbes. To date, much of the critical work on the generation of 68 has focused upon the international influences on this heterogeneous group, often overlooking the significance of local and national networks and nodes on the formation of this group and the poetry they produced. In the thesis I will also be examining key nodes around which the networks of the group were established. These nodes have been frequently mentioned, but rarely discussed in detail in relation to the group and rarely examined within the broader social network of the group. The networks between the group’s nodes – the personal and professional relationships, the linkages and cross fertilisation that occurred between these different groups – will be examined in the thesis to provide a more complex understanding of this group of poets; including the groups within the “generation of 68” group, their shared ideologies, and publishing practices.