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Altitude BirdIssue 44
Features reviews by Kathleen Broderick, Linn Miller, Christine Choo, Bill Thorpe, David Ritter, Eve Vincent, Stephanie Bishop, Alison Miles, Richard Kay, Amanda Day, Bernard Whimpress, Mads Clausen, Marion May Campbell, Sylvia Alston, Catie Gilchrist, Eva Chapman, Lucy Dougan, Stephen Lawrence and Nathanael O'Reilly. Click here for more details.


Altitude

Altitude BirdPopular Music: Practices, Formations and Change - Australian Perspectives
The papers collected here in this special edition of Altitude offer a brief snapshot of popular music research broadly connected with Australia. The essays demonstrate the variety of theoretical and methodological approaches used by researchers in the fields of popular music studies and cultural studies to explore themes of popular music practice, formation and change in an Australian context. Click here for more details.



 
 
 
 
Network Scholars

The Fulcrum of Noonkanbah

  • David Ritter
    imagePerceptions of the legacy of Sir Charles Court’s participation in Indigenous affairs inevitably rest upon his role in the Noonkanbah issue.1 A true cause celebre that coincided with the state of Western Australia’s non-Indigenous sesqui-centenary, Noonkanbah received enormous media attention and reached into many of the most intensely debated areas of Indigenous public policy. The late Jack Davis remarked in 1988 that Noonkanbah ‘highlighted and still highlights the issue[s] of two hundred years’.2 Symbolically, before Mabo, Wik and Hindmarsh there was Noonkanbah. In a ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

Beyond Good and Evil? Essays on the Literature and Culture of the Asia-Pacific Region (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Mads Clausen in the May 2006 issue.
    Haskell, McKinlay and Rich's Beyond Good and Evil: Essays on the Literature and Culture of the Asia-Pacific Region is borne out of what the authors see as the re-emergence of perilously rigid notions of evil in post-September 11 discourse. The editors see this monolithic conception of evil as 'a theological term of frightening certitude and simplification' particularly evident in the Bush administration's rhetoric, but that it also spills over into other debates about culture and identity, sustaining existing chasms in political and cultural discourse. The collection seeks to query this ... read more.
     

The Sleepers Almanac 2006: The nervous system (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Catie Gilchrist in the July 2006 issue.
    Anthologies of short stories are by their very nature fragmented and momentary. At times, this can make for a fractured reading experience, a literary equivalent of eating tapas when you crave something rather more solid and substantial. On the other hand, leaving the reader with a yearning desire for 'more' is perhaps the subtle art of crafting a good short story. The Nervous System succeeds remarkably well in this respect. It is an illustrated, irreverent anthology of short stories by established and unknown writers, offering an eclectic mix of fiction, non-fiction, poetry and recipes. Some ... read more.

Changing Ways of Death in Twentieth Century Australia: War, Medicine and the Funeral Business (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Stephanie Bishop in the July 2006 issue.
    Amongst my most enduring childhood memories is one in which I have my small seven year old hand pushed deep into the blue china urn that housed my great grandmother's ashes. I was curious as to how her body came to resemble grey dust, leading my father to explain to me the process of cremation whilst I, excitedly, came upon small bits of bone that I pulled out of the urn as though they were minor trophies in a gothic lucky dip. I seem to remember my father and I marvelling at these tiny fragments together, wondering as to what part of the body they once belonged. By the time she died my ... read more.

The Ethics of Waste: How we relate to rubbish (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Lisa McDonald in the May 2006 issue.
    I am standing in the local supermarket while renovations are made around me. I scan my list. Things have been moved: shelves, boxes, all kinds of items. Entire walls have disappeared. I stare at grime newly exposed which has set into some type of resin. Its crusty heritage contrasts in silent relief the otherwise polished architecture of supermarket things. A woman walks past and traces the direction of my eye. She winks this at me as I catch hers: 'Tsk'. And all this right here in the aisle of bleach, inside the colony of clean. Waste is nothing if not perverse, I think. I've been reading ... read more.

Terror, Culture, Politics: Rethinking 9/11 (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Adam Atkinson in the July 2006 issue.
    As Sherman and Nardin note in their introduction to Terror, Culture, Politics, of all the rhetorical, jingoistic gestures and formulas to emerge from September 11, the notion most in need of critique is that '9/11 changed everything' (p 4). Implicit, of course, is the question for whom precisely 'everything' has been altered. The United States, certainly, has discovered its vulnerability, and its security fears have impacted on the international community in numerous ways. Further, many of America's allies, including the Howard government, seem determined to follow Bush's lead in justifying a ... read more.

Drawing the Crow (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Eva Chapman in the July 2006 issue.
    This collection of essays is told through a 'set of South Australian eyes', those of Adrian Mitchell who grew up in Adelaide in the 1950s and is now a Professor of English at the University of Sydney. At the outset of this memoir, the author explains that the phrase, 'drawing the crow' can mean 'coming off worst in any allocation'. Having drawn the crow myself when I landed in Adelaide in 1950 as a three-year-old refugee from Eastern Europe, I was curious to read about that era from the point of view of a person born and bred in Adelaide. I was not disappointed. This book is a real treat. I ... read more.



 
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