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Thursday, 24th 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

Giving the Indigenous a Voice — further thoughts on the poetry of Eliza Hamilton Dunlop

  • John O'Leary
    imageIn the project of giving Australia’s Indigeous peoples a voice, it is sometimes assumed that only modern writers have a contribution to make. Nineteenthcentury colonial poets, however, often wrote on ‘Aboriginal’ themes, at times portraying Indigenous people sympathetically and, frequently, giving them a voice. An intriguing example of this is offered by the early New South Wales poet Eliza Hamilton Dunlop. While her verse is open to charges of colonialism and cultural appropriation, it nevertheless allowed the Indigenous people of her time to speak, after a fashion, at a ...
    Click here to read more.

Network Review of Books

Future Active: Media Activism and the Internet (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Melissa Gregg in the October 2002 issue.
    Despite (or perhaps because of) the reams of celebratory rhetoric accompanying the birth of the Internet, the world of online activism is still something of a neglected site for a sustained and historically informed analysis. Thankfully, Graham Meikle's Future Active has come along, filling a real gap for those interested in the motivations behind and the success of political action online. At once optimistic and sobering, Meikle's account helps to clarify as well as complicate the assumptions we may have of Internet activism, given our still perceptible reliance on older media forms to ... read more.

I Knit Water (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Sue Bond in the March 2003 issue.
    Mark Heron moves into HardgraveLodge in West End after his lover,Renee, says to him, 'Mark, I'm in lovewith all this, ... indicating the house,the cars, the cat, not with you' (p 2).Hardgrave Lodge is a converted housethat has been made into six flats, andlooks like 'an elderly pensioner beingassimilated by robots' (p 3). Over thecourse of the novel, Mark meets theother residents. They include Steve, anartist 'terrified by art' who has notfinished a painting since winning amajor prize some years ago. Stevewelcomes Mark to 'Heartbreak Lodge'(the reader comes to learn why itdeserves that name) ... read more.

Into the Blue: Boldly Going Where Captain Cook Has Gone Before (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Robert Clarke in the May 2003 issue.
    Captain James Cook had a busy year in 2002 with a number of titles about the eighteenth-century British navigator and explorer being released. Amongst them was Tony Horwitz's Into the Blue, which mixes history and social commentary with a fast flowing and at times very funny travel narrative. Horwitz is a US Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author of a number of fine travel books including One More for the Road, Confederates in the Attic, and Bagdhad without Maps. In this latest work he sets off on a journey that takes him to Polynesia and the northwestern coast of north America, and ... read more.

The Cultivation of Whiteness: Science, Health and Radical Destiny in Australia (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Sue Bond in the August 2002 issue.
    Warwick Anderson's book The Cultivation of Whiteness: Science, Health and Racial Destiny in Australia led to Adelaide University apologising to Aboriginal peoples for the 'barbarous' experiments some of its scientists performed in the 1930s. As Anderson describes, there was intense interest at that time in the 'half-caste' and how they might adapt to European civilisation. The Harvard-Adelaide half-caste study involved Norman Tindale and Joseph Birdsell visiting several areas in Adelaide, Victoria, Western Australia and Queensland, and measuring the physiology and anatomy of Aboriginal ... read more.

American Scoundrel: Murder, Love and Politics in Civil War America (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Daniel Fazio in the October 2002 issue.
    Thomas Keneally's American Scoundrel is a biography of Union General Daniel Sickles, one of the most controversial and enigmatic figures of nineteenth century America. Keneally wrote the story of Dan Sickles because it 'served as a mirror of the marital, political, and even military morality of the day, at a time when the most notable political experiment of the new world was under its severest test' (p xii). This entertaining and readable biography illustrates the complexities and contradictions of the enigmatic Dan Sickles, his passion and absolute loyalty to friends, his courage, ... read more.

Skins (2002)

  • imageReviewed by Marion May Campbell in the March 2003 issue.
    It takes some courage to choose as material for a first work of extended fiction the survival narrative of a handful of marooned characters and their captive women, who, except for one delicate Englishman, are brutalised, brutal, illiterate, or all three. Sarah Hay gives this situation austere and potent handling in her Vogel Prize-winning novel, Skins. The title evokes more than sealing or skin colour, although both senses are foregrounded in the book; it is fundamentally concerned with the behaviour of humans in naked need, whose circumstances are so circumscribed that only crude choices ... read more.

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