Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Tara June Winch's Swallow the Air. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Swallow the Air: Introduction
Swallow the Air: Plot Summary
Swallow the Air: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Swallow the Air: Themes
Swallow the Air: Quotes
Swallow the Air: Characters
Swallow the Air: Symbols
Swallow the Air: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Tara June Winch
Historical Context of Swallow the Air
Other Books Related to Swallow the Air
- Full Title: Swallow the Air
- When Written: 2003
- Where Written: Australia and France
- When Published: 2003
- Literary Period: Contemporary Australian Literature
- Genre: Novel
- Setting: Aboriginal communities in northern and eastern Australia
- Climax: May’s journey to find the remains of her tribe culminates in the realization that it has disintegrated and no longer occupies its traditional lands.
- Antagonist: Racism and colonialism, the rapist
- Point of View: First person limited
Extra Credit for Swallow the Air
Young Mother. Winch became a single mother at age 21 but insists she wasn’t daunted by the challenge, even when she and her daughter immigrated to Paris. The city has a “generosity of spirit,” Winch says, which made it easy to write and parent there.
Art follows life. While there are over 500 different tribes, or “nations,” of Australian Aborigines, Swallow the Air’s protagonist May Gibson shares her creator’s Wiradjuri heritage.