Not settled yet, Claudia Jardine

Christchurch Ruptures
Katie Pickles
BWB Texts, $15.00, ISBN 9780908321292

Leaving the Red Zone: Poems from the Canterbury Earthquakes
James Norcliffe and Joanna Preston (eds)
Clerestory Press, $40.00,
ISBN 9780992251758

When the time came to decide what I would do after high school, the University of Canterbury was not an option. Staying in my hometown, post-quakes or not, was a revolting idea. And, let’s face it, the same can be said about the university campus. They gave up the apexes and intrigues of what is now being restored as the Arts Centre and opted instead for squares and stairs out in the middle of the fields next to a lumpy cricket pitch. When I read Fiona Farrell’s description of it in The Villa at the Edge of the Empire, I chuckled. “Stalinist modernity”, indeed. Coming out of high school with few career ideas other than reading books for a living, I wanted a university that looked the part. So I moved to Wellington, and here I am, reading books.


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