The Enigmatic Mr Deakin

About the book

Alfred Deakin—scholar, spiritualist, prime minister—was instrumental in creating modern Australia. In the first biography of Deakin in more than half a century, the acclaimed political historian Judith Brett deftly weaves together his public, private and family lives. She brings out from behind the image of a worthy, bearded father of federation the principled and passionate, gifted and eccentric figure whose legacy continues to shape the contours of the nation's politics.

John Curtin's War: The coming of war in the Pacific, and reinventing Australia, volume 1

About the book

John Curtin became Australia's Prime Minister eight weeks before Japan launched war in the Pacific. Curtin's struggle for power against Joe Lyons and Bob Menzies, his dramatic use of it when he took office in October 1941, and his determination to be heard in Washington and London as Japan advanced, is a political epic unmatched in Australian experience. John Edwards' vivid, landmark biography places Curtin as a man of his times, puzzling through the immense changes in Australia and its region released by the mighty shock of the Pacific War.

Indigenous and Other Australians since 1901

About the book

Not 'dying out' as predicted, Aboriginal numbers recovered and—along with Torres Strait Islanders—they became an articulate presence, aggrieved at colonial authority's interventions into family life and continuing dispossession. This book narrates their recovery—not only in numbers but in cultural confidence and critical self-awareness. Pointing to Indigenous leaders, it also reassesses the contribution of government and mission 'protection' policies and the revised definitions of 'Aboriginal'. Rowse explains why Australia has conceded a large Indigenous Land and Sea Estate, and argues that...

Hidden in Plain View

About the book

Aboriginal people are prominent in accounts of early colonial Sydney, yet we skip a century as they disappear from the historical record, re-emerging early in the 20th century. What happened to Sydney's Indigenous people between the devastating impact of white settlement and increased government intervention a century later? This book shows that Aboriginal people did not disappear. They may have been ignored in colonial narratives but maintained a strong bond with the coast and its resources. This original and important book tells this powerful story through individuals, and brings a poorly...

Beautiful Balts

About the book

170,000 displaced persons arrived in Australia between 1947 and 1952. Australia's first immigration minister, Arthur Calwell, scoured post-war Europe for refugees, displaced persons he characterised as 'Beautiful Balts'. Amid the hierarchies of the White Australia Policy, the tensions of the Cold War and the national need for labour, these people would transform not only Australia's immigration policy, but the country itself. Beautiful Balts tells the extraordinary story of these people. It traces their journey from the camps of Europe after the Second World War to a new life in a land of...

A Handful of Sand: The Gurindji Struggle, After the Walk-off

About the book

Fifty years ago, a group of striking Aboriginal stockmen in remote Northern Territory heralded a revolution in the cattle industry and a massive shift in Aboriginal affairs. This book tells the story behind the Gurindji people’s famous Wave Hill Walk-off in 1966 and questions the meanings commonly attributed to the return of their land by Gough Whitlam in 1975. Written with a sensitive, candid and perceptive hand, A Handful of Sand reveals the path Vincent Lingiari and other Gurindji elders took to achieve their land rights victory, and how their struggles in fact began, rather than ended,...

Evatt: A Life

About the book

John Murphy’s Evatt: A Life is a biography of Australian parliamentarian and jurist HV Evatt. Remembered as the first foreign minister to argue for an independent Australian policy in the 1940s and for his central role in the formation of the UN, Evatt became leader of the Labor party in the 1950s, the time of the split that resulted in the party being out of power for a generation. Murphy places Evatt in the context of a long period of conservatism in Australia, treating his personal life as just as important as his controversial and eventual tragic public career.

Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent

About the book

Chester Wilmot (1911–1954) was a renowned Australian war correspondent, broadcaster and writer. Covering the North African battles of Bardia, Tobruk and Derna, the disaster of the Greek Campaign, the epic struggle along the Kokoda Track, the invasion at Normandy and the defeat of Nazi Germany, his voice stood above all others during BBC and ABC broadcasts throughout World War II....

'A passion for exploring new countries' Matthew Flinders and George Bass

About the book

Matthew Flinders and George Bass, two obscure young men from Lincolnshire, arrived in Sydney in 1795 determined to achieve greatness. Flinders wanted to be an explorer ‘second only to Cook’, Bass a naturalist, another Sir Joseph Banks, and a rich Sydney trader. For eight years these two pursued their destiny. Their voyages changed the map of Australia, and Flinders gave it its name. But then it was all over. This book is historically rigorous, yet its protagonists’ fascinating and contrasting characters and the extraordinary events of their lives make it as gripping as any novel.

Atomic Thunder: The Maralinga story

About the book

September 2016 marked 60 years since the first British atomic tests were conducted at Maralinga in South Australia, decimating an Indigenous community and irreversibly contaminating the land and its people....
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