Pascoe awarded 2021 ASA Medal
The Australian Society of Authors (ASA) has announced Bruce Pascoe is the recipient of the 2021 ASA Medal.
Author of the bestselling Dark Emu (Magabala), Pascoe has written over 30 books, and is an editor, publisher, anthologist, researcher and educator.
Accepting the award, Pascoe had a message for writers: ‘I know that there’s anguish among writers considering writing about Aboriginal history. If you want to do this, Aboriginal people need to be known to you. The imprint of your lips needs to be on their cup, and theirs on yours. Your fingerprints must be on their table, and theirs on yours. That’s the condition.’
He also raised the issue of funding cuts to the ABC, stating that ‘if we don’t leave our front door and get on the streets for the sake of the ABC we have the potential to lose that institution and we are going to regret it’.
Pascoe said he deeply appreciated ‘the honour it is to receive this medal from the Australian Society of Authors. It means a lot to me. I thank writers and I thank artists, because we are burdened with the responsibility of making sure our story is told, and that it is told correctly, for the sake of our grandchildren, our great grandchildren, and this great country, with its 120,000 years of history.’
The ASA said Pascoe’s contribution was vital ‘in this age of truth-telling’.
Established in 2003, the ASA Medal is awarded biennially to an Australian author or illustrator ‘who has made an outstanding contribution to Australian culture, both as a creator and an advocate’. Pascoe will be officially celebrated as the recipient of the Award at the ASA’s annual Colin Simpson Memorial Lecture in early 2022.