Heeding the Warnings: ‘Sucking up the seas’ in Vance Palmer’s Cyclone


  • Deborah Jordan University of Queensland




Climate change literary criticism calls for fundamental re-evalutions of our critical tools. In representations of extreme weather events, Vance Palmer’s Cyclone set in North Queensland meets many of the new criterion with its story about the impact of the cyclone on individuals, community and plot. The genesis and inspiration of the novel, its writing, its  publication, review and reception can be addressed. The cyclone is seen through the perceptions of different characters. Vance and Nettie Palmer knew many of the people drowned in the 1934 cyclone. Palmer drew on the historical record in his novel, which was published over a decade later. The reception of Cyclone was very limited given it was published locally by Angus & Robertson and had no serious critical response. The environmental imagination has been a powerful force in Australia creative writing and is undervalued in contemporary debates.




How to Cite

Jordan, D. (2011). Heeding the Warnings: ‘Sucking up the seas’ in Vance Palmer’s Cyclone. ETropic: Electronic Journal of Studies in the Tropics, 10. https://doi.org/10.25120/etropic.10.0.2011.3402