'The Tide That Riffles Back': Spiral Femininity in Carmel Bird’s Cape Grimm
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American Association of Australian Literary Studies
Carmel BirdAustralian LiteratureFeminine temporalityJulia KristevaAboriginesEthnicity
Rodríguez-Salas, G. 'The Tide That Riffles Back': Spiral Femininity in Carmel Bird’s Cape Grimm. Antipodes, 19(1): 85-90 (2005). [http://hdl.handle.net/10481/24829]
This article explores Carmel Bird’s novel Cape Grimm (2003) from a temporal and gender perspective in order to show how the author makes use of what Julia Kristeva theorizes as ‘Women’s Time’, a cyclical temporality that is connected with femininity. Although the writer portrays an objective, linear and masculine narrative from the beginning of the novel, her intention is to recognize an alternative writing where subjective, superstitious and feminine visions may offer an alternative truth, probably more convincing than the historical one we have been brainwashed to believe in. The three main intersecting stories of the novel are analyzed to show that, behind a masculine unifying appearance, there lies the author’s intention to highlight the importance of feminine, cyclical time as an alternative of change.