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Saturday, 19th April 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

'Among Birds and Beasts': Environmental Reform, Racial Preservation and Australian Progressives at the Zoological Gardens

  • Natalie Lloyd
    imageThe investigation of human-animal relations at Australian zoos reveals that constructions of nature alter across time and space. Material, social and symbolic relations are enveloped by historically specific understandings of animals. The importance or legitimacy attached to the conservation of species in association with the power of the elite shifted in the twentieth century from hunting and the frontier (though these continued to be important to the tourism industry) to the moulding of new cities, races and nations. The old associations of animals and natural history with the technology and ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

Facing Asia: A History of the Columbo Plan (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Matthew Ericson in the December 2004 issue.
    Facing Asia: A History of the Colombo Plan by Daniel Oakman is a superb book: well researched with extensive use of primary resource material; well argued with clear and largely jargon-free language; and with a basic analytical framework that speaks volumes for the merits of clear and concise research methodology and language. Oakman traces the origins and objectives of the Colombo Plan, which began in the 1950s and ostensibly sought to bring students of South and East Asia to Australia's eight universities, where they would be educated before returning to their own countries to propagate ... read more.

True North (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Helen Bethune Moore in the April 2005 issue.
    Poets use language for its perceived aesthetic qualities as much as for its semantic content. Poetry is quite licentious. Poets have the freedom to use devices such as assonance and repetition to achieve their desired effect. They can play with the accepted forms of grammatical structure almost at will. Poets are at liberty to conjure images using very personal metaphors and word associations or, conversely poets can display an intrinsic understanding of our entire cultural heritage by the phrases that they use. But like visual art, much of the beauty of poetry is in the eye, or in this case, ... read more.

Litigation: Past and Present (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Mark Finnane in the September 2004 issue.
    The legendary litigious character of American society is commonly regarded as an example to be avoided in Australia. The collapse of the private medical insurer, United Medical Protection, in 2001 prompted widespread media and political attention in Australia to what was described as a 'litigation crisis'. As Ted Wright and Angela Melville show in their lively treatment of civil litigation trends in this book, such a crisis was likely generated by something other than the trends in personal injury litigation in NSW which drifted downwards in the five years before the 'crisis'. In a phenomenon ... read more.

The Diary of Emily Caroline Creaghe, Explorer (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Amanda Day in the May 2005 issue.
    Originally published in the Lett's Australasian Diary and Almanac for 1883, the diary of explorer, Emily Caroline Creaghe has been republished with an introduction by Peter Monteath, Senior Lecturer in Australian History at Flinders University. Corkwood Press are known for their publication of journals of other explorers including Charles Sturt and Ludwig Leichhardt. Born in 1860, Creaghe spent her early life in India before her father retired from his post in the Royal Artillery. Her family returned to England before migrating in 1876 to Australia, settling at Lavender Bay. During a visit ... read more.

Reluctant Saviour: Australia, Indonesia and the independence of East Timor (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Damian Grenfell in the February 2005 issue.
    It has been more than five years since Australian-led intervention in East Timor. Following the 30 August vote for independence in 1999, both the Indonesian military and militias destroyed much of the physical and social infrastructure of East Timor. In September an international military force, largely made up of Australians, finally entered to prevent further violence. Answering to key questions on the nature of this intervention is Reluctant Saviour, a short polemically-styled text by Clinton Fernandes. With Australia finally taking a political and military lead to secure East Timor from ... read more.

Robert Louis Stevenson: His Best Pacific Writings (2004)

  • imageReviewed by Tim Dolin in the October 2004 issue.
    In June 1888, Robert Louis Stevenson -- tubercular (or perhaps not: see p 62), and at the height of his fame as a novelist and travel writer in Europe and America -- left San Francisco for the Marquesan Islands in the South Pacific on board the schooner Casco, along with his wife and stepson and his mother. The voyage had been paid for by SS McClure, who ran a newspaper syndication bureau in America, in return for travel essays or 'stories of adventure and so forth' (p 15), to be published as a series of articles and as a book. In the opening chapter of the resulting book, In the South Seas, ... read more.

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