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Tuesday, 29th 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

Voices from the Battlefield: Personal Narratives as an Historical Tool in Studying the Place of the Vietnam War in Australian Society

  • Janine Hiddlestone
    imageThe use of personal narratives has proved a popular method of studying the Vietnam War, both in Australia and the United States. Vietnam was one of the most controversial and longest wars in contemporary history. It was a war that was fought on the home front as well as on the battlefield, and for many, the wounds inflicted are still painful more than a quarter of a century later. The rush of histories that quickly followed previous wars were not so swift to appear after Vietnam. There was no great victory to celebrate and many found difficulty placing Vietnam into the context of a proud ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

The People Next Door: Understanding Indonesia (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Richard Gehrmann in the September 2004 issue.
    The Indonesian way is not ours. But it deserves respect, is worth the study, and calls for understanding.In the wake of the bomb attack on the Australian Embassy in Jakarta, a varied collection of thoughts come to mind. A decade ago I reviewed Ratih Hardjono's White Tribe of Asia: An Indonesian View of Australia. This was at a time of Gareth Evans and Paul Keating inspired euphoria for Australia's (apparently) new found relationship with Asia. The Ingleson Review on Asia in Australian Education and the Garnaut Report on regional economies had informed Australians that Asia actually did ... read more.

Terror Laws: ASIO, Counter-Terrorism and the Threat to Democracy (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Tony Smith in the July 2004 issue.
    Whether or not the whole world changed on 11 September, 2001, there is no doubt that the subsequent 'war on terror' has come to dominate both international and domestic politics. Jenny Hocking argues that in the struggle against terrorism, we need more effective, inclusive politics and more democracy. Unfortunately, the history of Australian responses to security threats so effectively chronicled by Hocking, suggests that governments imagine security to be in zero-sum competition with the rule of law and individual rights. This mind set is identifiable in the lack of strong protest about ... read more.

Identity and Justice: Conflicts, Contradictions and Contingencies (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Barbara Baird in the August 2005 issue.
    Debbie Rodan's book sets out to weave a path through theoretical approaches that assume sameness among people, and those that assume difference, in order to think about justice in a contemporary liberal society like Australia. (The book uses 'liberal' broadly and does not, for example, engage in arguments about neoliberalism). Rodan neither fully embraces nor discards modernist or postmodern conceptions of identity and sets out to propose models that do not fall into binary oppositions of sameness and difference. The book is oriented to the goal of achieving social change in the political ... read more.

The Shaded Side (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Sue Bond in the March 2005 issue.
    Janet M Brown's first novel, The Shaded Side is set in the 1940s, when tuberculosis was untreatable, pregnancy out of wedlock unthinkable, and secrets about such shameful things kept firmly locked away. It extends to the year 1998, when a truth is revealed. Jennifer grew up with her parents, Mary and Joe, and her maternal aunt, Ellen, in Footscray. When she was sixteen, she was told that she had been adopted and that her birthparents were both dead: her mother had died in childbirth, and her father had been killed in the war. Interwoven with Jenny's story of growing up is the story of ... read more.

Not For Sale: Feminists Resisting Prostitution and Pornography (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Lisette Kaleveld in the July 2005 issue.
    Even for those of us repeatedly reaching for the delete button, the visibility and accessibility of pornography in our everyday lives has increased exponentially. And yet, strangely, any substantial critique of it remains invisible. What is this silence? Is it discomfort? Is it approval? At best our reaction to pornography and prostitution is a snigger. And what can anyone really say in a world where Larry Flynt is a people's hero and a 'Porn star' t-shirt is a liberating statement (Clarke p 157). In our contemporary world, as Elizabeth Wurtzel has said, innocence itself is subversive. Clarke ... read more.

The Taste of Memory: Food and gardens have taken Marion Halligan to some surprising places... (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Sylvia Marchant in the March 2005 issue.
    Marion Halligan is an accomplished writer who needs no introduction to an Australian audience as her novels, short stories and non-fiction works, especially those about food, are well known and admired. She is indeed an Australian icon. Halligan's first published works were about food and here she returns to her favourite theme, taking a trip down memory lane in the tradition of memoir, a memoir framed by meditations on food, wine, gardens, life, and art, themes which have pervaded her life and experience. There are philosophic meanderings and reflections on such things as possessions, ... read more.

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