UoN Author Wins Major Literary Award.

Professor Sarah Wright, a human geographer from the University of Newcastle is part of a collective of women who were joint winners of the Prime Minister’s literary awards non-fiction category.

The Gay’wu Group of Women, including Professor Sarah Wright (standing second from the left).

The Prime Minister’s Literary Awards encourage a national appreciation of Australian literature and support increased understanding of Australian history.

The Gay’wu Group winning the non-fiction category for Songspirals was part of a record showing for Indigenous writers and writers of colour at the PM’s literary awards. Of the 40 shortlisted authors, nine were of Indigenous heritage.

The Gay’wu group of women (also known as the Bawaka Collective) have a long history collaborating together. Theirs is a 14-year research collaboration made up of three non-Indigenous academics, including Professor Wright, five female Yolŋu researchers from Northeast Arnhemland and Bawaka Country.

The collective has collaborated on many academic articles together as well as two other books.

Songspirals: Sharing Women’s Wisdom of Country through Songlines by Gay’Wu Group of Women, Allen & Unwin, 2019