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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

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

Talking Sense about Political Correctness

  • Robert Sparrow
    Over the last seven years or so the expression ‘political correctness’ has entered the political lexicon in the English-speaking world. Hundreds of opinion pieces in newspapers and magazines have been written about it in addition to scores of academic articles and debates in which the expression has gained currency. It is close to being received opinion in Anglo-American popular culture that a coalition of feminists, ethnic minorities, socialists and homosexuals have achieved a hegemony in the public sphere so as to make possible their censorship, or at least the effective ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

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.
     

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.

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.

Deconstructing Sport History: A Postmodern Analysis (2006)

  • imageReviewed by David Rowe in the May 2006 issue.
    The discipline of history and postmodern thought have rarely been happy travelling companions, not least in the subdiscipline of sport history. Without wishing to caricature the latter, or discount its honourable exceptions, much of it has displayed the 'reconstructionist na´ve empiricism' (p viii) bemoaned by Alun Munslow in the Foreword to this book. In sport history, furthermore, the easily obtained 'facts' of who played, lost and won have tended to be accompanied by nostalgic, romantic celebrations of its object. This is, then, not an intellectual space generally much given to ... read more.

Sharing Spaces: Indigenous and non-Indigenous Responses to Story, Country and Rights (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Linn Miller in the July 2006 issue.
    In regard to sharing stories, spaces and belongings, accounts we are accustomed to hearing in Australia--or want to hear--are often misleadingly simple and one-sided. Sharing Spaces not only succeeds in disclosing and exploring the ground--conceptual, geographical, socio-cultural and political--that connects people to place, past to present and indigenous to settler-Australians, it also acknowledges the complexity of the issues it tackles and respects the multiplicity of their phenomenal expression. Most refreshingly, where and when differing perspectives and understandings exist, and are ... read more.

Devotion (2006)

  • imageReviewed by Marion May Campbell in the July 2006 issue.
    For this elegantly constructed and potent first novel Ffion Murphy chooses cyberspace and the hospital corridor for the literally haunting narrative front, off-setting the potential claustrophobia of these spaces by broadly brushed estuary and beach vistas around Perth, Western Australia. The suburban gothic opens in elegiac mode with a backlit idyll underscored by dread -- the family picnic at Mt Eliza is disrupted by a visitation and a portent of loss. The pregnant body of the young mother, Veronica Peterson, is the site of contestation: the baby son will be reluctant to be born; the husband ... read more.



 
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