At a glance:
- Author: Miles Franklin
- First Published: 1901
- Type of Work: Novel
- Type of Plot: Psychological realism
- Setting: Australian Bush
- Characters: Sybylla Melvyn, Richard Melvyn, Lucy Melvyn, Gertie, Aunt Helen and Grannie, Uncle Julius, Harold Beecham, Everard Grey, Frank Hawden, The M’Swat Family
- Genres: Long fiction, Social realism, Bildungsroman, Autobiographical fiction, Novel
- Subjects: Maturation or coming of age, Freedom, Values, Philosophy or philosophers, Cattle, Politics, Socialism, Teenagers, Gender roles, Nineteenth century, Middle classes, Poverty or poor people, Feminism, Women's issues, Farms, farmers, or farming, Nationalism, Ambition, Disasters, Natural disasters, Ranches, ranchers, or ranching, Sheep, Australia or Australians, Droughts, Agnosticism, Dairy industry or products, Wilderness
- Locales: Australia, New South Wales, Australia, Australia and Oceania
Sybylla is the daughter of wealthy cattle station owner Richard Melvyn. When the family falls on hard times, Richard sells his three stations and buys Possum Gully, a small farm. Richard’s drinking habit undermines his livestock deals. He mortgages Possum Gully and uses the money to set up a dairy farm. The entire family slaves long hours for little return; the family drops from swelldom to peasantry. Sybylla’s previously gentle and refined mother becomes angry, thin, and careworn, while her father becomes slovenly and withdrawn; he loses all love for, and...
(The entire page is 2338 words.)
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