Randolph Stow

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For the South Australian judge, see Randolph Isham Stow.
Randolph Stow
Born Julian Randolph Stow
(1935-11-28)28 November 1935
Geraldton, Western Australia, Australia
Died 29 May 2010(2010-05-29) (aged 74)
Harwich, Essex, England, UK
Alma mater University of Western Australia
Notable works To the Islands (1958)
Notable awards Miles Franklin Award (1958)
Patrick White Award (1979)

Julian Randolph Stow (28 November 1935 – 29 May 2010) was an Australian writer.


Born in Geraldton, Western Australia, Randolph Stow attended Guildford Grammar School, the University of Western Australia, and the University of Sydney. He lectured in English Literature at the University of Adelaide, the University of Western Australia and the University of Leeds. He also worked on an Aboriginal mission, used as background for his novel To the Islands, and as an assistant to an anthropologist, Charles Julius, and cadet patrol officer in the Trobriand Islands, where he contracted malaria and suffered a mental and physical breakdown. He used these last experiences in Visitants.

For many years he lived at East Bergholt in Suffolk in England, his ancestral county, and he used traditional tales from that area to inform his novel The Girl Green as Elderflower. The last decades of his life he spent in nearby Harwich.

His novel To the Islands won the Miles Franklin Award in 1958.[1] He was awarded the Patrick White Award in 1979. As well as producing fiction, poetry, and numerous book reviews for the Times Literary Supplement, he also wrote libretti for theatrical works by Peter Maxwell Davies.

A considerable number of Randolph Stow's poems are listed in the State Library of Western Australia online catalogue[2] with indications where they have been anthologised.

He died in England of liver cancer at the age of 74.[3]


Selected works[edit]


  • A Haunted Land 1956
  • The Bystander 1957
  • To the Islands 1958 (revised in 1982)
  • Tourmaline 1963
  • The Merry-Go-Round in the Sea 1965
  • Visitants 1979
  • The Girl Green as Elderflower 1980
  • The Suburbs of Hell 1984


  • Act One 1957
  • Outrider: Poems 1956–1962 1962
  • A Counterfeit Silence: Selected Poems of Randolph Stow 1969


  • Midnite: The Story of a Wild Colonial Boy 1967
  • Midnite: The Play 1978



External links[edit]