From West Papua to Wellington: scholar and novelist appointed to the English, and Literary and Creative Communication Programme

The English, and Literary and Creative Communication programme is delighted to announce that Bonnie Etherington will be joining the programme in 2022.

Bonnie Etherington standing in front of a body of water
New English and Literary & Creative Communication hire Bonnie Etherington

Bonnie’s academic research focuses on contemporary protest narratives, poetry, and art created by Indigenous authors from Oceania. Her dissertation won the AAPS's 2021 Tracey Banivanua Mar PhD Prize and the 2020 Hagstrum Prize at Northwestern. She has articles forthcoming in the scholarly journals The Contemporary Pacific and Native American and Indigenous Studies.

Bonnie was born in Nelson, New Zealand, but spent most of her childhood in West Papua. Her first novel, The Earth Cries Out (Vintage NZ, 2017) grew from these experiences. The Earth Cries Out was shortlisted for the 2018 William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, and long-listed for the 2018 New Zealand Book Awards.

She received her BA (Hons) in English and Master of Creative Writing (Fiction) from Massey University. She was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2016, and has had poetry, short fiction, and nonfiction published in literary magazines and anthologies in Australia, New Zealand, the USA, and Malaysia.

Responding to her appointment, Bonnie says, "I am very excited to join Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington and contribute to the Literary and Creative Communication major. With its emphasis on critical as well as expressive approaches to writing and interpretation, the role captured my attention as one that celebrates the possibilities of story in all its incredibly varied definitions, and in its ever-changing contexts."

Bonnie will begin her role on 1 February 2022. More information about her work can be found here.