Publication Details

Slater, L. 2008, 'Becoming postcolonial: getting lost with Stephen Muecke's No Road and retelling Australia', in R. Sarwal & A. Sarwal (eds), Fact & Fiction: Readings in Australian Literature, AuthorPress, New Dehli. pp. 353


Stephen Muecke's No Road (1997) is a travel book that generates profoundly new ways of fuinking about Australia. Muecke proposes that if Australia is to become postcolonial d1an we must change the stories we tell and the way d1at we tell them. To take up the challenge he transforms the archetypal journey into a road that leads nowhere and explores instead an Australia overflowing with stories and potentiality. No Road is a hybrid text that weaves together Muecke's real and imagined travels throughout Australia, travels in which he pursues a dialogue between Indigenous and non-Indigenous histories. It is an experimental text, which juxtaposes memoir, theory, poetic reverie, letters, anecdotes, historical enquiry, personal speculation and Aboriginal oral narrative, positioning itself between fact and fiction. Muecke generates a critical practice that does not survey and classifY Australia, but rather partici pates in and produces new cultural practices.