Sydney University Press supports Australian literature

8 August 2007

Sydney University Press, which has brought over 40 classic Australian novels back into print in recent years, has backed calls this week to reinstate Australian literature's central place in English courses.

SUP supports the communiqué from the Literature Board of the Australia Council, released yesterday, suggesting Australian literature should form a core element in primary, secondary and tertiary English education.

"SUP has brought over 40 classic Australian novels back into print since 2003," said SUP Business Manager Susan Murray-Smith.

"The Classic Australian Works series currently features authors such as Jessica Anderson, Gerald Murnane and Martin Boyd. The SUP Classics include Barbara Baynton, Joseph Furphy, Henry Lawson, Catherine Martin and Henry Handel Richardson," she said.

"Our print-on-demand service ensures that none of these works will ever be out-of-print. When we first started, we imagined we would sell directly to readers. But increasingly we are distributing the works through bookshops interested in having a broader range of Australian works for sale."

SUP is an initiative of the University of Sydney Library, which has created one of the largest electronic collections of Australian historical and literary documents*. "Although the electronic collections are incredibly useful for research and study, people keep asking for print versions, particularly for the novels," said Ross Coleman, Director of Sydney eScholarship and Sydney University Press.

"SUP has been working with academics, AustLit, the Australian Literature Gateway at the University of Queensland, the Copyright Agency Ltd and other bodies to identify important Australian literature and make it available in print," says Murray-Smith.

* Note to Editors: The database is known as the Sydney Electronic Text and Image Service (SETIS).


Classic Australian Works (22 titles)

SUP Classics (32 titles covering historical and literary works)

RRP: from $9.95 to $37.95 plus postage

SETIS Australian Studies Resources

AustLit: The Resource for Australian Literature

Contact: Susan Murray-Smith, Business Manager, Sydney University Press

Phone: 02 9036 6442