Terry Lane reviews 'Liberty: A History of Civil Liberties in Australia' by James Waghorne and Stuart Macintyre

Terry Lane
25 October 2011

In 1988 the Hawke government put a constitutional amendment to a referendum. On the recommendation of the government’s Constitution Commission, we were invited to vote to enshrine guarantees of trial by jury, property rights, and freedom of religion. The proposition was rejected by all states. There is nothing surprising in that. We almost always do vote against c ... More

Robert Dare reviews 'Labour and the Politics of Empire' by Neville Kirk

Robert Dare
25 October 2011

In 1902 the New Zealander William Pember Reeves published a pioneering study of social innovations in Australia and New Zealand. He wrote it, he said, for the ‘increasing number of stude More

Rhyll McMaster reviews 'Sydney' by Delia Falconer

Rhyll McMaster
12 October 2011

Delia Falconer’s Sydney, the third in a series from NewSouth in which leading Australian authors write about their hometowns, is like its harbour, brimful with tones, vivid with More

Nick Dyrenfurth: Heroes & Villains; and Nick Dyrenfurth and Frank Bongiorno: A Little History of the Australian Labor Party

Stuart Macintyre
23 August 2011

Labor’s long history and uncertain future

Stuart Macintyre


Heroes & Villains: The Rise and Fall of the Early Australian Labor Party
by Nick Dyrenfurth
Australian Scholarly Publishing, $44 pb, 281 pp, 9781921875007


A Little Histo ... More

Clare Corbould reviews 'History at the Crossroads: Australians and the Past' by Paul Ashton and Paula Hamilton

Clare Corbould
23 August 2011

'The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there,’ said historian David Lowenthal in 1985, adopting L.P. Hartley’s famous opening line from The Go-Between. Mos More

Peter Stothard reviews 'Rome' by Robert Hughes

Peter Stothard
22 August 2011

There are two sorts of carelessness that a reviewer of history books will regularly see. The first is a minor marring of virtue: a small blot on a show of swashbuckling confidence and comm More

John Rickard reviews '1835: The Founding of Melbourne and the Conquest of Australia' by James Boyce

John Rickard
29 June 2011

The title of this book might, to an innocent observer, suggest a triumphalist history, an impression that could be reinforced by the preface, which argues that the setting up of a squatter More

Grazia Gunn reviews 'Cairo: Histories of a City' by Nezar AlSayyad

Grazia Gunn
29 June 2011

Italo Calvino once wrote that ‘cities are like dreams: their rules seem absurd, their perspectives are often deceitful, and everything in them conceals something else’, hence ‘we sho More

Gerard Vaughan reviews 'A History of the World in 100 Objects' by Neil MacGregor

Gerard Vaughan
24 May 2011

This fascinating, complex book relies for its success on the simplest of ideas and methodologies. Its publication was the necessary and inevitable follow-on from the hugely successful BBC More

John Rickard reviews 'Savage or Civilised? Manners in Colonial Australia' by Penny Russell

John Rickard
04 May 2011

Lacking a titled aristocracy and the leisured class that went with it, Australian colonial society encouraged an egalitarianism of manners. This, however, did not reflect the absence of so More

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