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|Cover artist||Sydney Nolan|
|Media type||Print (Hardback & Paperback)|
|Followed by||Clean Straw for Nothing|
My Brother Jack is a classic 1964 Australian novel by writer George Johnston. It is part of a trilogy centering on the character of David Meredith. The other books in the trilogy are Clean Straw for Nothing and A Cartload of Clay. Its text is commonly studied for many English literature subjects in Australia.
This semi-autobiographical novel follows the narrator, David Meredith, through his childhood and adolescence in interwarMelbourne through to adulthood and his journalism career during World War II. The novel constantly contrasts him with his older and more 'typically Australian', brother, Jack.
The book chronicles the life of an average Australian bloke in interwar Australian society. Jack Meredith is a liked and tough man, uneducated but hardworking and decent, who grew up suffering during the Great Depression. His younger brother has a successful and prominent career as a journalist, although the narrator's personal life is empty, unlike that of his more physical, less intellectual, more 'Aussie' brother Jack.
Jack is a post-colonial archetype of Australian men: a type that has largely disappeared from reality with the modernisation of Australia however the image lingers and continues to influence the national psyche. The novel describes the 'Aussie bloke' – physical, unintellectual – and his place in interwar Australian history with affection and a certain respect.
The book was made into an Australian TV series (2001).
Awards and nominations
My Brother Jack won the Miles Franklin Award in 1964.
1965 TV series
The book was serialised for ABC in 1965 by Charmian Clift, who was also Johnston's wife. It featured actors Ed Devereaux, Nick Tate and Richard Meikle.
2001 TV series
It was adapted again in 2001 by John Alsop and Sue Smith. The cast included William McInnes, Angie Milliken, Claudia Karvan and Jack Thompson, with Simon Lyndon, Matt Day as the brothers and Ross Ward from Ballarat.
- ^Australian Bookcovers #114 - My Brother Jack by George Johnston, By Perry Middlemiss on May 20, 2008 6:43 AM. Retrieved 2012-01-14.
- ^''MY BROTHER JACK''. The Australian Women's Weekly. 22 September 1965. p. 18. Retrieved 19 December 2015 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^'Prize novel now a TV serial'. The Canberra Times. 16 August 1965. p. 1 Section: TELEVISION and radio GUIDE. Retrieved 5 February 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
- ^'My brother Jack Strikes a Chord'. The Age. 12 August 1965. p. 14.
- My Brother Jack 2001 mini-series at Australian Screen Online
- My Brother Jack 1965 series at IMDb
|Awards and achievements|
Careful, He Might Hear You
|Miles Franklin Award recipient|
The Slow Natives