Book Club / Culture

Sweatshop Literacy Movement presents ‘Blacklight’ – a powerful anthology showcasing 10 years of First Nations storytelling

sweatshop blacklight

Once again, we find ourselves adding another title from Sweatshop Literacy Movement to our ever-expanding reading list. The book in question? Blacklight: Ten Years of First Nations Storytelling. Announced today, the anthology acts as a roll call, bringing together the entirety of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices that have come up through Sweatshop since its inception in 2012.

At the helm of the project is award-winning Wiradjuri writer Hannah Donnelly. As the editor of Blacklight she has been tasked with collating some forty-eight short stories, vignettes, poems, essays and artworks. On top of this, and to complement the pre-existing works, Donnelly enlisted nine other First Nations creatives to generate original pieces for the anthology.

Expect words from Jazz Money, the Wiradjuri poet who graced us with How to make a basket; Dharug knowledge holder Aunty Julie Bukari; Wailwan arts worker Ali Murphy-Oates, as well as writing from Wemba Wemba, Muthi Muthi and Wiradjuri consultant Steven Lindsay Ross.

You will also find original pieces from award-winning Dharug writer Jasmine Seymour, Travis De Vries, Dr Jo Anne Rey, Maxine Edwards and Yuin Mumbulla, a Yaegl and Yuin student currently attending high school.

Meanwhile, Barkindji, Wakka Wakka, Latjilatji and Biri Gubba visual artist, and self-proclaimed "meme lord", Emily Johnson designed the cover for Blacklight. 

To bring the project into fruition, Sweatshop partnered with Campbelltown City Library as part of the Campbelltown Youth Literacy Initiative for Diverse Writers, with an aim to bring culturally and linguistically diverse voices to the fore of Australian literature. Blacklight is also supported by the Crown Resorts Foundation & Packer Family Foundation along with the Australia Council for the Arts, Diversity Arts Australia and ACE.

Secure yourself a copy of Blacklight: Ten Years of First Nations Storytelling now at the Sweatshop website. Happy reading!

Looking for more in the way of home grown authors? See our essential Australian reading list.

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