Today Paul Brunton OAM is going to launch Biography of a book: Henry Lawson’s While the billy boils by Paul Eggert. The book explores the publication of While the billy boils in the complicated landscape of the early days of Australian publishing industry. Eggert traces the difficult production of Lawson’s work through the murky waters of editing, copyright and royalties. The new edition of While the billy boils: the original newspaper versions, reproduces Lawson’s work as it originally appeared in print. Lawson’s works are published in chronological order, reflecting his growth and change as a writer. It showcases the unique style in which Lawson originally wrote his works, deftly portraying the speech and humour of his characters through idiosyncratic spelling and syntax.
Diana Wyndham is keeping Norman Haire in the news, with an interview on Late Night Live with Phillip Adams, and a talk at Stanton Library in North Sydney. You can listen to the podcast of the LNL talk, or attend the free talk on Tuesday 26 February.
Norman Haire and the study of sex was also reviewed in the February edition of the Australian Book Review.
Talk at Stanton Library, Tuesday 26 February 2013, 1pm
Republics of Letters: Literary Communities in Australia, edited by Peter Kirkpatrick and Robert Dixon, looks at the role of institutions and intermediaries in the process of literary creation. James Ley reviews the book in The Australian, 19 January 2013.
Ley notes, “How does one measure such intangible factors as influence, the importance of social support networks in creating new work, or the extent to which the solitary act of reading can be said to connect a person to the wider culture?”.
Norman Haire and the study of sex follows the life of this incredibly brave and daring Australian who supported the sexual freedom of all. What seems to be particular poignant today is his championing the reproductive rights of women and the control of women’s bodies by women.
Dr Norman Haire, sexologist, practised at a time when sex and sexuality – woman’s sexuality in particular – were taboo topics. In the early years of the twentieth century (has it changed so much?), it was expected that a woman was to remain chaste before marriage; when she did marry, provide her husband with sexual pleasure while not necessarily receiving that pleasure herself; reject all methods of birth control; and give birth to a multitude of healthy babies. The questions that Haire asked of these expectations were shocking to the conservative, polite society of the time. Why must there be no sex before marriage when women and men mature sexually in their early teens? Why can there not be a trial-marriage period? Why must sexual pleasure of women be less of a priority than that of men? Why shouldn’t there be safe and easy for women to access birth-control products?
GPs are fitting much more into patient consultations than they were a decade ago but the average length of the consultation has stayed the same, research led by the University of Sydney shows.
“‘We are seeing our GPs more often than we were a decade ago, and the GPs are also fitting more into their consultations. For example patients are presenting with more issues, GPs are managing more problems, and doing more tests and procedures — yet the time spent in the average consultation has stayed steady at about 15 minutes.”
Two reports published today General practice activity in Australia 2011-12 and A decade of Australian general practice 2002-03 to 2011-12, provide data on the activities of our GPs and the care of their patients.
The data comes from the Bettering the Evaluation and Care of Health (BEACH) program which continuously collects information about clinical activities in general practice in Australia. Associate Professor Britt is director of the program.
Sydney: the Making of a Public University by Julia Horne and Geoffrey Sherington, has been shortlisted in the NSW Premier’s History Awards in the Community and Regional History Prize.
The book explores the principle of public engagement and how it came into practice and was shaped by succeeding generations. From staff, students and curriculum, to sports, philanthropy, faiths and research, Julia Horne and Geoffrey Sherington probe the meaning of the first hundred and sixty years of Sydney University, one of the first public universities in the world.
Sydney: the Making of a Public University By Julia Horne and Geoffrey Sherington
Six years of research into the recorded history of the Yolngu people comes home today with the launch of a book of historic photographs compiled by the University of Sydney’s first Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research fellow, Dr Joe Gumbula.
Mali’Buku-Runanmaram: Images from Milingimbi and surrounds, 1926-1948 (Darlington Press and the University of Sydney Archives, 2012) brings Dr Gumbula’s people treasured images, among the earliest in existence, of Yolngu traditions and mission life. Most of the book’s 380 photographs, housed in the University Archives, have never been viewed by either Yolngu or the wider public.
- Mali’ Buku-Ruŋanmaram Chosen and described by Joseph Neparrŋa Gumbula
Taking Our Place explores the creation, in 1975, of the Aboriginal Teachers Aides program which as Linda Burney says, ‘was a groundbreaking program, [as] it opened up universities for Aboriginal people’. Even though this program was ultimately absorbed into the TAFE system, its success provided the catalyst for the creation of the Aboriginal Education Centre (AEC), renamed the Koori Centre in 1992. Today, with its own research and teaching capability the Koori Centre is crucial in offering support to an increasing number of Indigenous students undertaking mainstream degrees at the university. It also provides a focal point for non-Indigenous students wishing to broaden their knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal history and culture.
Taking Our Place: Aboriginal Education and the Story of the Koori Centre at the University of Sydney by John Cleverley and Janet Mooney
One of our favourite little books was listed on the new Prime Minister’s bookshelf, as reported by yesterday’s Australian newspaper. The Tolpuddle Martyrs is a story that has inspired the union movement for over 170 years. But as Doc Evatt shows in his legal analysis of the case, it is also a fascinating example of how the law can be used to punish the powerless, even without an actual miscarriage of justice.
The Tolpuddle Martyrs: injustice within the law by Herbert Vere Evatt with a new introduction by Geoffrey Robertson
At the start of the First World War, Australia was a fledgling nation, still strongly tied to Britain and the Empire. But even in those early days, Australia’s leaders could see that we needed to be able to defend ourselves as well as support others in need. A ‘Pacific fleet’ to protect Australia, New Zealand and other British outposts in the region was of utmost importance to Australia, but less important to Britain facing a war in the Atlantic and at her doorstep.
During the War, these conflicting priorities intensified as Australia struggled to decide whether to conscript soldiers to fight overseas as well as for home defence. Ideas of loyalty to the Mother Country, and the precedence of Britishness over national pride were tested. Following the war, Australia’s leaders lobbied to retain the annexed German outposts in the Pacific, and Prime Minister Hughes believed that the Allies deserved reparation for the costs of the war.
Neville Meaney has explored these issues in-depth in his 2-volume work, A history of Australian defence and foreign policy. Volume 2, Australia and World Crisis 1914-1923 will be launched by Professor Kim Beazley. A new print of Volume 1, The Search for Security in the Pacific has also been released to coincide with the release of Vol 2.