'The Oily Ratbag and the Recycled Waratah: Early Years of ABR' by Kerryn Goldsworthy

Reviewed by
April 2003, no. 250

'The Oily Ratbag and the Recycled Waratah: Early Years of ABR' by Kerryn Goldsworthy

Reviewed by
April 2003, no. 250

This is issue no. 250, and the twenty-fifth consecutive year, of Australian Book Review. Issue No. 1 appeared in 1978, edited by John McLaren and published by the National Book Council. Since then the journal has survived and thrived, through changes of editor (though not very often) and of editorial policy (though not very much); through changes of appearance, ownership, sponsorship and affiliation.

However, that ‘250’ effaces a whole earlier chapter in the history of ABR. When Issue No. 1 appeared in June 1978, the magazine was not being started: it was being revived. The original incarnation was published out of Adelaide for twelve years, edited in the first instance by Max Harris, Geoffrey Dutton and Rosemary Wighton. Dutton dropped out along the way, but Harris and Wighton continued to edit the journal until its final issue at the end of 1973. The first issue of the original Australian Book Review – Vol. 1, No. 1 – was published in November 1961.

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