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Alan Frost

Alan Frost

Alan Frost is an academic, novelist, and poet. He has been elected to the position of Fellow at both the Royal Historical Society in London, and the Australian Academy of the Humanities in Canberra. He is well known for his books on Australian colonisation, including Botany Bay Mirages: Illusions of Convict Australia in 1994, and Botany Bay: The Real Story in 2011.

Alan Frost reviews 'Ill-Starred Captains: Flinders and Baudin' by Anthony J. Brown, 'Letters to Ann: The love story of Matthew Flinders and Ann Chappelle' by Catherine Retter and Shirley Sinclair (eds), and 'The Life of Matthew Flinders' by Ernest Sc

October 2001, no. 235 01 October 2001
I suspect that even his contemporaries found Matthew Flinders strange and not entirely likeable. His father hoped that, like his grandfather and himself, Matthew would become a surgeon, but filled with enthusiasm for adventure after reading Robinson Crusoe, the youth insisted on a career in the navy. He wrote to the woman who would become his long-suffering wife in a style that would have been sti ... (read more)

Alan Frost reviews 'The Governor’s Noble Guest: Hyacinthe de Bougainville’s account of Port Jackson, 1825' translated and edited by Marc Serge Rivière

April 2000, no. 219 01 April 2000
 The British exploration of the Pacific Ocean between 1764, when Byron sailed, and 1780, when Cook’s third circumnavigation concluded, and the colonisation of New South Wales from 1788 onwards, effectively set agendas in discovery and settlement which France and Spain had to emulate if they were to continue as Britain’s imperial rivals. Spain’s effort to match the British agenda was sp ... (read more)

Alan Frost reviews 'Looking for Australia: Historical essays' by John Hirst

September 2010, no. 324 01 September 2010
John Hirst is a distinctive figure in Australian intellectual life. As an academic, he has had a distinguished career at La Trobe University in teaching, supervision, and research. He developed new subjects and methodologies with which to teach them. In addition to those concerning Australian history, there was his pioneering subject designed to inform students about Australia’s European cultura ... (read more)

Alan Frost reviews 'Islanders: The Pacific in the Age of Empire' by Nicholas Thomas

February 2011, no. 328 01 February 2011
Nicholas Thomas’s principal purposes in this study are to show, first, that the peoples of the Pacific were neither incurious about the world beyond their islands, nor lacking in the emotional or imaginative means to apprehend cultures different from their own. Even before the coming of European maritime discoverers, they were accustomed to undertaking lengthy voyages and sometimes migrations fr ... (read more)