“A Sort of Buzzing”: Queer Sound in David Malouf’s Blood Relations

2017-05-23T00:30:52Z (GMT) by James Marland
David Malouf’s only stage play, Blood Relations, is an Australian re-telling of Shakespeare’s comedy, The Tempest. Following its premiere at the Sydney Theatre Company in 1987, the play received a mixed critical reception and has generated relatively little scholarly interest since. While much of the critical discourse concerned with Malouf’s work centres on his novels and poetry, Blood Relations is important for providing a dramatic lens on issues that are recognisable in much of his work, such as his exploration of postcolonial Australia. In fact, Blood Relations operates as a postcolonial palimpsest that problematises the relationship between the European settlers (represented through the Greek-born character Willy) and Australia’s Indigenous population (represented through the Aboriginal character Kit).