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Sunday, 20th April 2014

API Review of Books

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 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

Frontier Feminism and the Marauding White Man

  • Marilyn Lake
    ‘Here in Australia’, Louisa Lawson observed with characteristic matter-of-factness, ‘it is considered more a crime to steal a horse than ruin a girl’.1 On the Darling Downs, at the turn of the century, another pioneering wife explained; ‘Women in the farming districts don’t occupy a very high place in the masculine community — being classed usually according to their degree of usefulness with other animals’.2 (And thanks to Anne Maree Collins’ work on bestiality the extent of the usefulness of the other animals is only now beginning to be ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

Beyond the Lattice: Broome's Early Years (2003)

  • imageReviewed by Christine Choo in the November 2003 issue.
    Broome and its history have captured the popular imagination of Australians, particularly in recent years since it has become a desirable travel destination of better-heeled tourists and not just a well-kept secret of ageing hippies and sun-seeking retirees. The town's existence and early development depended on the discovery of rich offshore pearling beds which led to the exploitation of Aboriginal and later Asian labour put to work in unsavoury conditions in the service of colonial pearling masters. In Broome more than any other north-western town Australians are confronted with the legacies ... read more.

Fighting Films: A History of the Waterside Workers' Federation Film Unit (2003)

  • imageReviewed by Rebecca Johinke in the April 2004 issue.
    Lisa Milner has done an excellent job of transforming her PhD thesis into an entertaining and accessible read for anyone interested in film culture, the history of Sydney's wharf workers, or trade unions in Australia. Fighting Films provides an account of the Waterside Workers' Federation Film Unit (hereafter WWFFU), which operated in Sydney from 1953-1958. It was the first film production unit within a trade union anywhere in the world. The three members of the Unit (Norma Disher, Keith Gow and Jock Levy) made fourteen films before the WWFFU was dismantled. Milner describes the political and ... read more.

Beyond the Ladies Lounge: Australia's Female Publicans (2003)

  • imageReviewed by Rae Frances in the March 2004 issue.
    For decades Australian publishers have been saying that doctoral theses do not make good books. While I have never believed this, Clare Wright's first book should convince anyone that the book-of-the-thesis need not be tediously worthy and inaccessible to the general reader. Beyond the Ladies Lounge is a thoroughly engaging, mercifully jargon-free, passionate yet intelligent cultural history of the female publican in Australia. Wright has a clear aim: she seeks to convince the reader that the Australian pub was never an exclusively male preserve. On the contrary, female publicans have always ... read more.

Male Trouble: Looking at Australian Masculinities (2003)

  • imageReviewed by David Coad in the February 2004 issue.
    Male Trouble brings together nine essays using sociological approaches in order to analyse Australian masculinities. Seven of these essays appeared in print five years ago in the special 'Masculinities' issue of the Journal of Interdisciplinary Gender Studies from the University of Newcastle with almost the same titles as the chapters of Male Trouble. Strangely, this republication of already available material on the subject of Australian masculinities is not acknowledged in the Introduction (RW Connell penned an introduction for both versions). The blurb on the back cover describes the book ... read more.

Sushi Central (2003)

  • imageReviewed by Geoff Parkes in the February 2004 issue.
    How do you judge the debut work of a young writer writing about a young writer? What standards does one use to critique the work, knowing it was created by someone barely old enough to not work at McDonalds? Can age be an excuse for stylistic or editorial errors that someone wiser should have noticed on the path to publication? Or if we absent the author, the method of publication and the socio-cultural framework in which it exists, how then do we give merit to a text that without its context may not be that rewarding at all? All these questions come to bear when reading Sushi Central, ... read more.

Farewell Cinderella: creating arts and identity in Western Australia (2003)

  • imageReviewed by Shannon Schedlich-Day in the February 2004 issue.
    For years, Western Australia has been lumbered with the pejorative epithet of the 'Cinderella State.' In Farewell Cinderella: Creating Arts and Identity in Western Australia, nine authors seek to prove that the tag no longer applies to the state. In the eight essays which cover a broad spectrum of mediums and time, the authors trace the history of the arts in Western Australia. The editors of the text believe that Western Australia has moved past being the 'Cinderella State,' and can now rightfully claim its place alongside the other states in terms of having a defined cultural identity. ... read more.

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