Henry Handel Richardson

Also found in: Wikipedia.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Richardson, Henry Handel


(pen name of Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson). Born Jan. 3, 1870, in Melbourne; died Mar. 20, 1946, in Hastings, Sussex. Australian writer.

Richardson graduated from a college in Melbourne and studied music in Leipzig. She lived in Europe beginning in 1888, settling in England in 1895. In the novels Maurice Guest (1908) and The Young Cosima (1939), Richardson combined a realistic depiction of man’s inner world with a Nietzschean idealization of the “strong” personality. The trilogy The Fortunes of Richard Mahony (1930) is set against a broad background of Australian and English life of the second half of the 19th century. It depicts the tragedy of a man of strong moral principles who is inwardly isolated. The work occupies an important place in the history of the Australian novel. Richardson also wrote the autobiography Myself When Young (published 1948).


Palmer, N. H. H. Richardson: A Study. Sydney, 1950.
Buckley, V. H. H. Richardson. Canberra, 1963.
Howells, G. H. H. Richardson: 1870–1946; A Bibliography. Canberra, 1970.
Green, D. Ulysses Bound: Henry Handel Richardson and Her Fiction. Canberra, 1973.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Most previous books about her have been either novels--including one from 1939 entitled The Young Cosima by Australia's Henry Handel Richardson, to which for some reason Oliver Hilmes nowhere alludes--or hagiographies.
Her poems, works of criticism and her study of Henry Handel Richardson, entitled Ulysses Unbound, come to the reader's attention, as it were, in passing.
The recently formed Henry Handel Richardson Society undertook a very successful tour of houses and places associated with the author's childhood in Victoria over the period from 9 to 11 October 2008.
Tracey Caulfield is completing a PhD, a bibliography of Henry Handel Richardson. The three deserve congratulations on a worthy and useful contribution.
In second place in the top 40 was 'The Man Who Loved Children' by Christina Stead, followed by 'The Fortunes of Richard Mahony' by Henry Handel Richardson, 'Dirt Music' by Tim Winston, and 'Voss' by Patrick White, who had five books in the list.
A recent authoritative publication on Australian Literature primly ruled Henry Handel Richardson "Out of Bounds." (Her sport, by the way, was tennis not hockey.) While Richardson thought of herself as Australian, she was an Australian of the colonial period, born and brought up in a British colony.
When I examined this phenomenon in relation to the novels of Henry Handel Richardson (The Fortunes of Richard Mahoney, 1929) Katharine Susannah Prichard, (Coonardoo, 1929) Eleanor Dark (The Timeless Land, 1941), Mary Durack (Keep Him My Country, 1955), I found that the authors either adopted personae in the novels which took up proper 'feminine' positions, speaking as mothers or helpmates, or they worked metaphorically with the Australian landscape as the voice of the other.
One of the three schoolgirl fictions she cites, however, Henry Handel Richardson's The Getting of Wisdom (1910), is set in the Presbyterian Ladies' College, Melbourne, hardly an exemplar of the English public school.
She wrote several authoritative works on the Australian novelist Henry Handel Richardson and was the editor of The Oxford History of Australian Literature (1981).