29 Nov 2023 16:00 - 18:00 Room S1, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge


An event by the Indigenous Studies Discussion Group

Poetry Reading with Alison J. Barton. Inaugural  Cambridge University First Nations Writer-in-Residence Fellowship, author of Not Telling (Puncher & Wattmann, 2024)


Alison J Barton (Wiradjuri), Inaugural Winner of the Cambridge University First Nations Writer-in-Residence Fellowship)


If you still remember the wonderful poetry reading night we had last year with the Australian Aboriginal poet Yvette Holt (Bidjara/Wakaman), the event is returning this year for all Cambridge poetry lovers with Alison J. Barton (Wiradjuri), the inaugural winner of the Cambridge University Australia First Nations Writer-in-Residence Fellowship. Alison will lead us from her own fight for decolonisation through using Australian Indigenous poetry to replace the historical archive that sought to erase the histories, experiences, and the very existence of the First Nation peoples. 

Alison will lead the poetry reading by sharing her decolonial works from her first collection Not Telling (Puncher & Wattmann, 2024). All those who are joining the events are encouraged to bring one poem either written by yourself or you liked that are related to the experiences of empowerment for those who suffered and are suffering from the legacies of traumatic colonial history. By sharing, reading and discussing the verses, we hope to forge understanding and solidarity through the power of poetry and end the ISDG Michaelmas 2023 series with a fun and empowering evening! 

About the speaker

Alison J Barton is a Wiradjuri-Australian poet based in Naarm (Melbourne). She holds a Bachelor of Arts: Professional Writing & Editing, a Masters in Social Work, and Postgraduate Diploma in Gender Studies. Themes of race relations, Aboriginal-Australian history, colonisation, gender and psychoanalytic theory are central to her poetry.

She is widely published in Australian and international literary journals including Meanjin, Meniscus, Overland, Cordite, Westerly Magazine, Australian Poetry Journal, Otoliths, Rabbit, StylusLit, Mascara Literary Review and many others. In 2023 she won several fellowships with the National Writer’s House of Australia, Varuna House, and her poetry was recognised with numerous prizes. In both 2022 and 2023, Alison’s work appeared in Best of Australian Poems. Her first full-length collection of poetry, Not Telling, will be published with Puncher & Wattmann in 2024.

Alison is the inaugural winner of the Cambridge University First Nations Writer-in-Residence Fellowship and will be in residence from October to December 2023. While at the university, she will begin research on her second full-length collection of poetry examining the complex relations between German Lutheran missionaries in the 1800s and Australia’s Indigenous people.

Alison’s published works and latest news can be viewed at www.alisonjbarton.com

The event will be followed by a casual dinner in a nearby restaurant (TBC) to celebrate Alison’s fellowship. No-Host, but all welcome! If you’re joining us for the dinner, do please indicate that when you register for the event. We hope to see many of you there!

Kindly note that the dinner expenses are not covered by the organisers.

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