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Wednesday, 30th July 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

Mythologising Frontier: Narrative Versions of the Rufus River Conflict, 1841-1899

  • Amanda Nettlebeck
    In the formation of Australia’s regional identities, as well as in the stories and legends in which those identities are memorialised, colonial race relations pose an unsettling problem. It is an historical orthodoxy to say that South Australia has avoided that problem, at least in its circulation of a public image, because of a reputation for preserving better contact relations than earlier-founded colonies. Yet it is also broadly recognised that this reputation sits in tension with a history of extensive and (at the time) public conflict in what Mary Louise Pratt calls the contact ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

Canvas Documentaries: Panoramic Entertainments in Nineteenth Century Australia and New Zealand (2002)

  • imageReviewed by David Dunstan in the May 2003 issue.
    So much in thrall are we with imaging technology's spectacular and converging internet, television and the cinema applications that we are sometimes forgetful of its history. Media history, let alone media pre-history, gets scant attention these days. This is a pity because Mimi Colligan's Canvas Documentaries is fascinating on pre-cinematic forms and popular culture in Australia and New Zealand. Quite understandably, we prefer a history of 'firsts', great beginnings and successes. We think of the birth of photography and the cinema as defining moments (and so they were) but many teachers of ... read more.

Recollections of a Bleeding Heart: a portrait of Paul Keating PM (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Martin Leet in the August 2002 issue.
    On New Year's Day 1992, Don Watson promised himself that he would have no more to do with politics. As somewhat of a 'bleeding heart', he had reached such depths of despair about the Labor side of Australian politics that he found himself admiring the energy and conviction in John Hewson's Fightback! manifesto. At first, then, he declined the offer to be a speechwriter for Paul Keating, who had just become the new prime minister. After meeting Keating, however, and seeing the 'sadness' and 'melancholy' in his 'famous brown eyes', Watson says he 'liked him and knew at once that I wanted the ... read more.

The Brisbane Broncos: The Team to Beat (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Jim Chalmers in the June 2003 issue.
    Jack Gallaway's The Brisbane Broncos is a narrative of sporting and business success. It deals with the politics of sport and finance; the history of the 'greatest game'; innovation; and the battle for the hearts and minds of the Australian sporting public. Unashamedly a fan, the author takes us on tour of rugby league in Queensland, the political argy-bargy leading to the birth of the Broncos, and 14 seasons marked by achievement after achievement and, of course, the odd disappointment. He speaks as an ardent follower of the team and, he confesses, as a supplier to the coaching staff of ... read more.

The Quick and the Dead: Stawell and its Race through Time (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Grace Johansen in the June 2003 issue.
    Sporting history contributes much to social history and the study of national identity. By providing a comprehensive overview of pedestrianism, and in particular the Stawell Gift, John Perry makes a significant contribution to the sporting history of Victoria. It not only points to the role of the organisations which account for the formation of the sporting event known as the Stawell Gift, and the importance of the heroes who emerged as outstanding competitors, it also emphasises the effect on the town's economy and social life. Additionally it looks at the anomaly of holding what was ... read more.

September 11, 2001: Feminist Perspectives (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Eliza Matthews in the November 2002 issue.
    Another book that addresses the tragic events of 11 September 2001 (note that I defer to the Australian order of date!), September 11, 2001: Feminist Perspectives does this by expressing raw emotion, as opposed to employing academic rigor, to assess the subject of this important historical event. Whilst personal contributions (in this case they appear in the form of emails, personal letters, poetry, testimony to government committees and so on) on this matter are interesting and valuable in the sense that this book provides excellent primary source documentation as to how feminists from ... read more.

Rabbit-Proof Fence: the screenplay (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Tony Hughes-d'Aeth in the June 2003 issue.
    The release of Rabbit Proof Fence (Miramax, 2001), depicting the 1,600 kilometre journey of three Aboriginal girls from the Pilbara, was a significant cultural event in Australia.  For better or for worse the film will stand for the forseeable future as the paradigmatic rendition of what Bain Attwood has termed 'the stolen generations narrative'.  While not a blockbuster, the film has been well patronised and has enjoyed long showing periods at Australian cinemas.  It is due for North American release next month (August 2002).  The number of people who go and see the film will exceed by ... read more.

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