Tropical Flowers: Romancing North Queensland in Early Female Fiction and Poetry
The flower tradition's portraiture of tropical Queensland invites recognition as a divergent strand. In choosing to depict the region's unfamiliar land- and sea-scapes, the authors set aside the dusty outback Australia of the masculine Bulletin and pioneering traditions, and reverted to underlying Romantic perspectives on nature as dynamically beautiful, spiritual and creative. Their texts therefore claimed the region as an alternative feminised space. Although as romance writers they often avoided racial issues or replicated their era's assumptions, they sometimes replaced stereotyped responses with advocacy for Aboriginal people.