Danielle Clode

Danielle Clode

Danielle Clode is the author of ten books of environmental history, including Voyages to the South Seas which won the Victorian Premier’s Award for Non-fiction in 2007. In 2014 she was the ABR Dahl Trust Fellow and her article ‘Seeing the Wood for the Trees’ appeared in the November 2014 issue of ABR.

Danielle Clode reviews 'Rose: The extraordinary voyage of Rose de Freycinet, the stowaway who sailed around the world for love' by Suzanne Falkiner

August 2022, no. 445 28 July 2022
Danielle Clode reviews 'Rose: The extraordinary voyage of Rose de Freycinet, the stowaway who sailed around the world for love' by Suzanne Falkiner
The great age of sail – of European exploration and colonisation – is typically depicted as trenchantly masculine, with the only ‘women’ being unpredictable ships and the sea itself. Women have traditionally been considered bad luck, distracting, or not tough enough for life at sea. Nonetheless, historical research is increasingly revealing that many women played active roles at sea, as co ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'A Letter to Layla: Travels to our deep past and near future' by Ramona Koval

November 2020, no. 426 22 October 2020
Danielle Clode reviews 'A Letter to Layla: Travels to our deep past and near future' by Ramona Koval
A Letter to Layla is very much a book of our times. Its impetus lies in our rapidly changing climate, and it concludes with the unexpected impact of Covid-19. In between, the book explores both our distant past and our future. Well known for her past career as an ABC broadcaster, Ramona Koval turns her talent for in-depth interviews and her training in science into an engaging and illuminating bo ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'The Colonial Kangaroo Hunt' by Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver

August 2020, no. 423 27 July 2020
Danielle Clode reviews 'The Colonial Kangaroo Hunt' by Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver
As generations of Australian tourists have found, the kangaroo is a far more recognisable symbol of nationality than our generic colonial flag. Both emblematic and problematic, this group of animals has long occupied a significant and ambiguous space in the Australian psyche. Small wonder, then, that Ken Gelder and Rachael Weaver have found such rich material through which to explore our colonial ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Botanical Revelation: European encounters with Australian plants before Darwin' by David J. Mabberley

March 2020, no. 419 24 February 2020
Danielle Clode reviews 'Botanical Revelation: European encounters with Australian plants before Darwin' by David J. Mabberley
Plants are one of the first things you notice when you arrive in Australia: the swathes of olive-green trees and a crisp eucalypt scent on the air. It was the first thing many explorers noted, too, whether in Abel Tasman’s 1642 description of an ‘abundance of timber’ or in Willem de Vlamingh’s 1694 descriptions of trees ‘dripping with gum’ and the ‘whole land filled with the fine ple ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Idling in Green Places: A life of Alec Chisholm' by Russell McGregor

January–February 2020, no. 418 16 December 2019
Danielle Clode reviews 'Idling in Green Places: A life of Alec Chisholm' by Russell McGregor
Australian nature writing has come a long way in recent years. Not only do we have an abundance of contemporary nature writers, but we are also rediscovering the ones we have forgotten. The neglect of Australia’s nature writing history, with its contributions to science, literature, and conservation, is happily being redressed with recent biographies of Jean Galbraith, Rica Erickson, Edith Colem ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Tales from the Inner City' by Shaun Tan

January-February 2019, no. 408 31 December 2018
Danielle Clode reviews 'Tales from the Inner City' by Shaun Tan
It is hard to think of a more distinctive and idiosyncratic author than Western Australian Shaun Tan. Winner of the prestigious Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award for children’s literature, Tan’s work has also been recognised by numerous awards in speculative fiction, illustration, and children’s books, including an Academy Award in 2011 (for the animated short adaptation of The Lost Thing). By ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Turmoil: Letters from the brink' by Robyn Williams

October 2018, no. 405 24 September 2018
Danielle Clode reviews 'Turmoil: Letters from the brink' by Robyn Williams
In 2014, veteran ABC science broadcaster Robyn Williams was diagnosed with bowel cancer. It was, he reports, his third brush with death, following cardiac arrest in 1988 and bladder cancer in 1991. His description of the experience, including surgical reduction of his gut and rectum and subsequent debilitating chemotherapy, is brief but graphic. He has survived, but the experience, as he puts it, ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Adventures of a Young Naturalist: The Zoo Quest expeditions' by David Attenborough

January–February 2018, no. 398 19 December 2017
Danielle Clode reviews 'Adventures of a Young Naturalist: The Zoo Quest expeditions' by David Attenborough
David Attenborough turned ninety last year. In a short animation celebrating his birthday, two Aardman penguins muse on their first meeting with the famous naturalist. ‘There’s something just about him,’ says the first penguin. ‘I don’t know why you wouldn’t love David Attenborough,’ declares the second. Indeed, it is hard to find anyone who does not admire Attenborough. Over the dec ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker' by A.N. Wilson

December 2017, no. 397 24 November 2017
Danielle Clode reviews 'Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker' by A.N. Wilson
Millions of words have been printed by and about Charles Darwin. There are hundreds of biographies, the dozens of books he wrote (including his own autobiography), as well as various pamphlets, essays, correspondence, diaries, manuscript notes, and other ephemera. Fascinating though the man and his work is, it must be hard to come up with anything new to say about him. Perhaps this is why A.N. Wi ... (read more)

Danielle Clode reviews 'Wild Man From Borneo: A cultural history of the Orangutan' by Robert Cribb, Helen Gilbert, and Helen Tiffen

June-July 2017, no. 392 30 May 2017
Danielle Clode reviews 'Wild Man From Borneo: A cultural history of the Orangutan' by Robert Cribb, Helen Gilbert, and Helen Tiffen
What does it mean to be human – nearly human, not-quite-human, or even inhuman? Such questions have preoccupied writers and researchers for centuries, from Charles Darwin and Mary Shelley to the uncanny valley of robotics, AI, and a trans-human future. In Wild Man from Borneo, Robert Cribb, Helen Gilbert, and Helen Tiffen explore this question through the prism of our relationship with one of ou ... (read more)
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