Australia: A Cultural History, first published in 1988, is still the only short history of Australia from a cultural perspective. It has acquired a unique reputation as an introduction to the development of Australian society and was listed by the historian and public intellectual John Hirst in his 'First XI: The best Australian history books'. The book focuses on the transmission of values, beliefs and customs amongst the diverse mix of peoples who are today's Australians. The story begins with the 60,000 years of the Aboriginal presence and their continuing material and spiritual relationship with the land, and takes readers through the turbulent years of British colonisation and the emergence, through prosperity, war and depression, of the cultural accommodations which have been distinctively Australian. This 3rd Edition concludes with a critical review of the challenges facing contemporary Australia and warns that 'we may get the future we deserve'. [Some images unavailable for OA]
[This book] delves into a wealth of literary and artistic sources, including illuminated manuscripts, woodcut engravings, magic-lantern slides, paintings, prints, poems, novels and stories, providing a fresh take on a subject that has fascinated us for centuries. In this broad cultural history, Susan Owens reveals what these spirits and apparitions can tell us about our culture and about ourselves, and explores how ghosts have inhabited a wide range of roles from medieval times to the present day. A dazzling range of artists are featured, including William Blake, Henry Fuseli, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Everett Millais, Paul Nash and Jeremy Deller, alongside writers such as John Donne, William Shakespeare, Samuel Pepys, Daniel Defoe, Mary Shelley, Emily Brontë, Charles Dickens, Thomas Hardy, Hilary Mantel and Sarah Waters
Ugly as sin, the ugly duckling—or maybe you fell out of the ugly tree? Let's face it, we've all used the word "ugly" to describe someone we've seen—hopefully just in our private thoughts—but have we ever considered how slippery the term can be, indicating anything from the slightly unsightly to the downright revolting? What really lurks behind this most favored insult? In this actually beautiful book, Gretchen E. Henderson casts an unfazed gaze at ugliness, tracing its long-standing grasp on our cultural imagination and highlighting all the peculiar ways it has attracted us to its repulsion. Henderson explores the ways we have perceived ugliness throughout history, from ancient Roman feasts to medieval grotesque gargoyles, from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein to the Nazi Exhibition of Degenerate Art. Covering literature, art, music, and even the cutest possible incarnation of the term—Uglydolls—she reveals how ugliness has long posed a challenge to aesthetics and taste. She moves beyond the traditional philosophic argument that simply places ugliness in opposition to beauty in order to dismantle just what we mean when we say "ugly." Following ugly things wherever they have trod, she traverses continents and centuries to delineate the changing map of ugliness and the profound effects it has had on the public imagination, littering her path with one fascinating tidbit after another. Lovingly illustrated with the foulest images from art, history, and culture, Ugliness offers an oddly refreshing perspective, going past the surface to ask what "ugly" truly is, even as its meaning continues to shift.
Michel Foucault's History of culture / Patricia O'Brien -- Crowds, community, and ritual in the work of E.P. Thompson and Natalie Davis / Suzanne Desan -- Local knowledge, local history : Geertz and beyond / Aletta Biersack -- Literature, criticism, and historical imagination : the literary challenge of Hayden White and Dominick LaCapra / Lloyd S. Kramer -- The American parade : representations of the nineteenth-century social order / Mary Ryan -- Texts, printing, readings / Roger Chartier -- Bodies, details, and the humanitarian narrative / Thomas W. Laqueur -- Seeing culture in a room for a Renaissance prince / Randolph Starn