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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

Howard's Methodism: How convenient?!

  • Marion Maddox
    imageAnalyses of John Howard’s social policy often attribute his social conservatism to personal nostalgia, seeking sources in his schooling, family background and church attendance. For example, recent publications have attributed Howard’s positions on unemployment, industrial relations, multiculturalism, reconciliation and refugees to his childhood Methodism. There are good reasons for skepticism about such accounts, however. This article draws on archival research on 1950s Methodism, both nationally and in the congregation the Howard family attended, to demonstrate that, in instance ...
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Network Review of Books

Postcode: The splintering of a nation (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Ann Jensen in the September 2005 issue.
    Wayne Swan has written a page-turner, which is no small achievement when the topic is social inequities and the content is grounded in statistics. Postcode is a clever title and concept. It describes how geography and economy conspire to isolate some communities from both the real and the iconic prosperity of Australia. This book takes a sobering stare down the prospects for vulnerable groups in an age of rationalised economies and diminishing welfare. In a climate of apparent affluence and increasing apathy over the economic destiny of people who are unable to play the money-making game, ... read more.
     

The Archaeology of Contact in Settler Societies (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Vicki Grieves in the January 2006 issue.
    As an historian I have long admired the work of archaeologists whose quest for knowledge of the past leads them to directly reclaim the evidence of human occupation and activity from the earth itself. To be so engaged in finding evidence from the layers of earth, where the fragments of stone, china, glass, bone and metal not only fall but slowly sink, and to face the challenge of piecing together the stories of those who left this evidence behind, is truly admirable. It is also invaluable material for the historian who is all the richer for being informed by the archaeologists' discoveries ... read more.

Blur: Friendly Street Poets 29 (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Natasha Lester in the September 2005 issue.
    Underlying it all, however, is an undeniable strength: the determination to live and love at all costs; this is why human beings need poetry (p x)This is the challenge that Amelia Walker and Shen, editors of Blur, the latest Friendly Street Poets' anthology, have set themselves. So do they and the collection deliver? For the most part, yes. Blur is full of spirit; it resonates with poetic voices striving to capture every facet of the world in which we find ourselves living. Friendly Street was formed in 1975 in South Australia and is the forum for one of Australia's longest running live ... read more.

Subtopia (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Jean-François Vernay in the May 2006 issue.
    Like many realist novels, Subtopia is the fruit of the author's experience. For a kid who lived out his adolescence in a quiet and desolate Melburnian suburb and ended up as an Associate Professor of English at Dartmouth College in an American metropolis, one half-expects a novel of ideas set against the gritty urban backdrop of 1970s Australia. Julian, a narrator of many theories, recounts what he perceives as his static life:Events in suburbia seldom generate the dynamism that can propel us on to something else. Rather, they tend to stasis, like a boring plotless movie in which the camera ... read more.

Freeing Ali: The Human Face of the Pacific Solution (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Chelsea Rodd in the February 2006 issue.
    When the first boat of Vietnamese refugees docked in Darwin in 1975 the Liberal government of Malcolm Fraser accepted these people into the Australian community promptly and efficiently. The refugees were seeking to enter a country that had only recently decided to distance itself from its White Australian past. Though the pockets of racial anxiety and disquiet within the Australian community were given voice by the popular press of the day, Fraser responded humanely, quashing public protest against the boatpeople. Most Australians soon acceded to the government's decision, welcoming the ... read more.

Suburban Anatomy (2005)

  • imageReviewed by Nathanael O'Reilly in the July 2006 issue.
    Canberra poet Penelope Layland's 2005 collection Suburban Anatomy was Shortlisted for the 2006 New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards' Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry. The cover blurb states, 'This is her first collection of poetry.' However, in 1998 Molonglo Press actually published Layland's first collection, The Unlikely Orchard, which was commended by the judges of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature's Mary Gilmore Award for a First Book of Poetry. It is not clear why this information is not included anywhere in Layland's latest volume, as it is common practice for ... read more.



 
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