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Writing historical fiction from a cross-cultural perspective – Alison Wong

July 23, 2012

Reading the Picador Australia Notes for Reading Groups; Alison Wong As the Earth Turns Silver by Robyn Sheahan-Bright ((2009) Pan Macmillan Australia: Sydney), I came across this transcript of a seminar given by Alison Wong:

http://www.stevenyoung.co.nz/The-Chinese-in-New-Zealand/Whats-New/Writing-Historical-Fiction-from-a-Cross-Cultural-Perspective.html

In it, Wong points to the “real tension between the demands of fiction and the demands of history” and explores her negotiation of this tension.

When she poses the question: “where is the common ground between cultures and where do our assumptions lead to miscommunication and misunderstanding?” she could be summing up the tensions of the story in As the Earth Turns Silver! I’m going to read it through again…

Also note: for some historical background, Wong suggests the article, http://www.stevenyoung.co.nz/The-Chinese-in-New-Zealand/Current-Historical-Research/REMEMBERING-HAINING-STREET-With-both-eyes-open.html

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