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Wednesday, 20th August 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

A Slow Coming of Age: Advertising and the Little Boy from Manly in the Twentieth Century

  • Robert Crawford
    Looking back on his career, renowned Bulletin cartoonist Livingston ‘Hop’ Hopkins recalled the difficulties cartoonists face when depicting Australia as a human figure. ‘Every nation’, he declared, ‘has some mythical figure, usually of the gentler sex, to typify the national spirit’.1 The use of classical feminine figures was a well-established allegorical tradition.2 Hop, however, found the feminine figure not only ‘difficult to acclimatise’, but also unsuitable for presenting the ‘more rugged phases of national life’. ‘There ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

That Magnificent 9th: An Illustrated History of the 9th Australian Division 1940-46 (2002)

  • imageReviewed by David Horner in the December 2002 issue.
    Australian soldiers fight and die for their mates, not for ideology. For the infantryman, the embodiment of this mateship is his battalion. In Jo Gullett's oft-quoted statement, an 'effective battalion in being, ready to fight, implies a state of mind -- I am not sure it implies a state of grace'. Although perhaps as many as 3,000 soldiers served in each Australian battalion during the Second World War, soldiers personally knew most of their comrades. Not surprisingly, most of the Australia's Second World War infantry battalions, as well as many of the artillery regiments, have active unit ... read more.

American Citizens, British Slaves: Yankee Political Prisoners in an Australian Penal Colony 1839-1850 (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Ann Howard in the October 2002 issue.
    In the 1830s American republican activists were fired up by a red-wigged editor, William Mackenzie, who proposed a constitution for an independent Upper Canada, based on that of the US. Following a rebellion of French patriotes from Lower Canada, he led a poorly organised army across the Canadian border to facilitate this. 700 suspected rebels were arrested by the British and Mackenzie's two lieutenants were hanged. Support for the rebels was said to be running high. About 500 volunteers stepped forward as replacements. Unfortunately, the belief that the colonists of Upper Canada were ... read more.

MamaKuma: One Woman, Two Cultures (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Sue Bond in the March 2003 issue.
    I read MamaKuma: One woman twocultures in one sitting, so enthrallingwas the story of this courageous, lovingwoman and her bridging of the twoworlds of black and white in the NewGuinea Highlands. It is, at first sight, abeautifully produced book, with adetail from a photograph of DeborahCarlyon in ceremonial headdressforming the front cover, and thebroadly smiling face of hergrandmother, Kuma Kelage, on theback. There are line drawings by theauthor and photographs of her relativesincluded within the text. Kuma Kelage, who was lovinglycalled Mama Kuma by everyone, wasborn in about 1928 in the ... read more.

Platypus: The Extraordinary Story of How a Curious Creature Baffled the World (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Pia Van Ravestein in the October 2002 issue.
    Ann Moyal is a well-known historian, particularly of Australian natural science, and Platypus: The Extraordinary Story of How a Curious Creature Baffled the World about the unique Australian icon is a qualitative and quantitative tome of exploration. It covers social, theological and scientific contexts of platypus study in such a fine manner that it won the 2001 Whitley Award from the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales for best historical zoology book. Platypus is a welcome addition to an already extensive corpus of knowledge on the peculiar duck-billed monotreme, Ornithorhynchus, ... read more.

Simply Hell Let Loose: stories of Australians at war (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Lauren Barrow in the November 2002 issue.
    It is an interesting coincidence that Simply Hell Let Loose: Stories of Australians at War has been released at a time where the pros and cons of a War on Terror are at the forefront of most Australians' minds. This book proves itself to be an invaluable source of reflection on both the devastating and liberating effects of war. The many issues it raises are pivotal when considering Australia's reaction to terrorism. Simply Hell Let Loose is not a celebration of war, nor is it an outright remonstration of it. Rather, it provides a diverse selection of personal accounts that highlight both ... read more.

The Australian Frontier Wars 1788-1838 (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Lorenzo Veracini in the April 2003 issue.
    The Ice and the Inland The Australian Frontier Wars 1788-1838 These are very different books: a sophisticated argument concerning the shaping of an Australian consciousness, and an acutely needed military overview of the first fifty years of British presence on the continent. Both works, however, repropose forcefully the question of the defining role of the 'frontier' in Australian history, and aim to revisit in a similar direction a theme that is strategically located at the heart of Australian debates about the foundations of the national identity. Despite their very different approach ... read more.

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