The Mother Wound

2022 - Shortlisted


Judges' Comments 

A young lawyer is confronted by the violent death of her mother, stabbed repeatedly by her father, after 28 years in an unhappy and emotionally abusive marriage. Within months, the author goes into labour with her first child. This experience is framed by another murder, that of her maternal grandmother, shelled while fleeing a raid on her home village in southern Lebanon. A searing and significant account of domestic abuse within an immigrant family, the writing is beautifully restrained, nuanced, and devoid of melodrama. Through her professional vocation, the author also explores the state of Australian non-violence advocacy and activism, together with the effects of local cultural and religious stereotypes. 



About the Author

Portrait of Amani Haydar

Amani Haydar is a writer, award-winning artist and former Archibald Prize finalist based in western Sydney. Her writing and illustrations have been published in Arab Australian Other, Sweatshop Women Volume Two, SBS Voices and ABC News Online. In 2020 Amani was a finalist for the NSW Premier’s Woman of the Year Award and was named Local Woman of the Year for Bankstown in recognition of her advocacy against domestic violence. The Mother Wound is Amani's debut book.