Overland, the most radical of Australia’s long-standing literary and cultural magazines, celebrated its 50th year in 2004.
Publishing features, fiction, poetry, reviews, comment, artwork and opinion pieces, Overland is committed to engaging with important literary, cultural and political issues in contemporary Australia. It has a tradition of publishing dissenting articles with a political and cultural focus.
With ‘culture that matters … since 1954’ as its motto, Overland is the only high-profile Australian literary magazine that sees the publication and advancement of new and marginal writers as part of its charter.
Produced quarterly, Overland was founded in 1954 under the editorship of Stephen Murray-Smith, with the motto ‘temper democratic, bias Australian’. At the time it incorporated The Realist Writer, the journal of the Melbourne Realist Writers’ Group.
Contributors over the years include Peter Carey, Patrick White, Garry Disher, Elizabeth Jolley, Stuart Macintyre, David Foster, Germaine Greer, Dorothy Hewett, Mark Davis, Sam Watson, David Williamson, Thomas Shapcott, Judith Wright, Rodney Hall, Gwen Harwood, Thea Astley, Alan Marshall, Xavier Herbert, Amanda Lohrey, Bruce Dawe, Frank Moorhouse, Manning Clark, Humphrey McQueen, Christina Stead, Geoffrey Dutton, Max Harris, Chris Wallace-Crabbe, Nancy Cato, Frank Hardy, Lily Brett, Peter Porter, James McAuley, Geoffrey Serle, Alison Croggon, Robert Adamson, Ian Turner, Jack Hibberd, Christos Tsiolkas, Alex Buzo, Martin Flanagan, David Marr, Tony Birch, Dorothy Porter, Fiona Capp, Margaret Simons, Antony Loewenstein, Larissa Behrendt, Linda Jaivin, Kalinda Ashton, Nam Le, Sophie Cunningham, Jane Gleeson-White, Charlotte Wood, Benjamin Law, Alexis Wright, James Bradley, Margo Lanagan and many, many others.
Yet Overland also gives a voice to the experiences that are excluded from the mainstream media and publishing outlets. The magazine has been part of an ongoing attempt to document lesser-known stories and histories, dissect media hysteria and dishonesty, debunk the populist hype of politicians, give a voice to those whose stories are otherwise marginalised, misrepresented or ignored, and point public debate in alternative directions.
While Overland remains committed to the quarterly print journal, its project now also includes regular online publication of reviews, commentary, stories, poems and other materials. It also holds regular events.