“Keep your head down and read Pete Hay” – Richard Flanagan’s advice to Geordie Williamson.**
Pete (sometimes known as Peter) Hay is a Tasmanian writer and scholar. To find out more, scroll on.
* Zita Cobb, ‘The Way Forward’, March 2012.
** Reported by Geordie Williamson, Chief Literary Critic at The Australian, at the launch of Pete’s collection of essays, Forgotten Corners, at The Hobart Bookshop, 6th November 2019.
Pete would like to be remembered as a cricketer. This is unlikely. Some of his other personas are better known.
Pete is the author of several published collections of poetry:
- Physick (Shoestring Press, 2016) – shortlisted for the Tasmanian Premier’s Book Prize 2017
- Girl Reading Lorca (Picaro, 2015; republished Bright South 2017)
- Silently on the Tide – Voted one of Tasmania’s 15 favourite books, and the only book of poetry to make that list. (Walleah Press, 2005)
- The View from the Non-Members’ Bar (Hazard Press, 1992)
Pete has also published several collaborative works, and edited a collection of the folk verse of the Western District of Victoria. To find out more about his poetry and these collections, and read some of Pete’s poems, please visit the Poetry page.
Pete also writes personal essays, which have been widely published but are also conveniently collected in two volumes, both published by Walleah Press: Vandemonian Essays (2002) and Forgotten Corners: Essays in Search of an Island’s Soul (2019) – winner of the Small Press Network’s 2020 Book of the Year Award. Pete’s essays traverse into scholarly territory, about which you can read more below, but Pete is resolute in his belief that his essays are more poetry than academic writing.
To find out more about Pete’s essays, please visit the Essays page.
Pete (sometimes Peter) Hay – Scholar, PhD
Retired Reader in Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Tasmania (1985 – 2008), Pete remains an Honorary Research Associate at that institution. His research impact has mainly been in the sub-disciplines of island studies, place theory, environmental thought and the democratic credentials of activism. His major academic work is Main Currents in Western Environmental Thought (2002), published in Britain as A Companion to Environmental Thought.
You can find out more about Pete’s academic work on the University of Tasmania website (direct link to Pete’s academic profile and many publications). Some of Pete’s academic publications can be found on his blog.
As well as Pete the Poet and Pete the Scholar, there is also Pete the Activist. He has Chaired Environment Tasmania and twice worked as a political advisor to the Australian Labor Party, once at a federal level, and once as Senior Private Secretary to the Minister for Environment and Planning during Tasmania’s historic Labor – Green Accord.
Of Pete, 2014 Man Booker Prize winner Richard Flanagan wrote:
“It is true that Pete Hay tends to get into trouble with powerful people for saying things they would rather he didn’t”.
Afterword, Vandemonian Essays.
Pete sometimes claims that his other alter ego is a fool.
Neither Pete nor Peter run any ASX listed companies.