Question: How does ‘True History of the Kelly Gang’ by Peter Carey

The construction of myth & how is it broken down and re-imagined?


Irish Australian Perspective Carey presents the conflict between both Kelly’s immediate Australian past, as well as his memories regarding his Irish ancestry. Quotation: “Carey engages with Kelly’s appeal to a culturally remembered Irishness to destabilise its validity, which in turn can challenge our contemporary cultural memory of the Ned Kelly myth.” Challenge of colonial assumptions – destabilising truth and historical fact, development of multiple truths to contest the singular, all-encompassing colonial metanarrative The reinterpreted account has provided a way in which we are able to critically assess the past.

The post-modern interpretation challenges prior colonial assumptions and enables the ability to raise questions of the truth. The environment depicted by Carey, is on that is profoundly characterised by social inequalities and divisions, where Irish Australians are pitted against the British colonial authorities. Through Kelly, anti-authoritarian sentiments and rebellions are brought forward.

Construction of masculinised

Australian self Carey highlights the fact that nationalism is greatly gendered and sexualised, and through the portrayal of characters, is able to challenge the idea of a masculinised Australian self. The Australian identity enforced the idea of heterosexual masculinity, with gender playing an important role in the construction of national identity.

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