Australian history books

The Battle of Long Tan: The Company Commanders Story

The Battle of Long Tan: The Company Commanders Story

Harry Smith

On the afternoon of 18 August 1966, just five kilometres from the main Australian Task Force base at Nui Dat, a group of Viet Cong soldiers walked into the right flank of Delta Company, 6 RAR. 

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Australia's Original Languages: An Introduction

Australia’s Original Languages: An Introduction

R. M. W. Dixon

An introduction to Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait languages that explains their distinctive features accessibly for readers who have no previous experience with learning another language, and shows how language reflects...

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Mad Dogs and Thunderbolts

Mad Dogs and Thunderbolts

Ben Pobjie

Ned Kelly's tin helmet looms large over Australia's bushranging past, but what about all the unsung outlaws of the Australian bush? What about Black Caesar, who escaped his tyrannous British overlords four times and indeed...

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Dancing under the Southern Skies

Dancing under the Southern Skies

Valerie Lawson

With its vivid narrative, Valerie Lawson's Dancing Under the Southern Skies goes far beyond what audiences see on stage to reveal what has been behind the red velvet curtain.

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Australia's First Naturalists

Australia’s First Naturalists

Penny Olsen, Lynette Russell

Penny Olsen and Lynette Russell have gathered together Aboriginal peoples' contributions to demonstrate the crucial role they played in early Australian zoology. 

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Bedlam at Botany Bay

Bedlam at Botany Bay

James Dunk

What happened when people went mad in the fledgling colony of New South Wales? In this important new history of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, we find out through the correspondence of tireless colonial...

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Skywriting: Making Radio Waves

Skywriting: Making Radio Waves

Robyn Ravlich

Skywriting: Making Radio Waves is at once the captivating story of contemporary Australian cultural life and a personal biography of an acclaimed `radio poet', whose signature radio features and documentaries on ABC...

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Paddington: A History

Paddington: A History

Greg Young

Provides a fresh and revealing perspective on this celebrated heritage suburb in Sydney - one of the largest and most intact Victorian enclaves in the world. Leading historians and specialists explore the makeup of Paddington's...

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Courage in the Skies

Courage in the Skies

Jim Eames

The extraordinary and little known story of Qantas' significant role during World War II

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The Change Makers

The Change Makers

Shaun Carney

Now more than ever we need leaders who can be strong yet humble, bold and assertive when it counts but have the capacity to listen and learn, who can motivate and influence, and who can get the best out of those around them....

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Dark Emu (New Edition)

Dark Emu (New Edition)

Bruce Pascoe

Contradicts the conventional wisdom that native peoples were primitive hunter-gatherers

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Contesting Australian History

Contesting Australian History

Joy Damousi, Judith Smart

One of Australia's leading scholars and a highly distinguished professor of history, Marilyn Lake forged a career that spanned several decades across a number of universities. Her books have significantly advanced our...

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You Daughters of Freedom

You Daughters of Freedom

Clare Wright

For the ten years from 1902, when Australia's suffrage campaigners won the vote for white women, the world looked to this trailblazing young democracy for inspiration. Clare Wright's epic new history tells the story of...

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Blue Lake

Blue Lake

David Sornig

I'm here already, in the bleak, awful hour on Dudley Flats in which the final dereliction of Elsie Williams will come to pass. I'm beginning with it, so you won't be under any illusion as to how it ends.

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Serving Our Country

Serving Our Country

Joan Beaumont, Allison Cadzow

After decades of silence, Serving Our Country is the first comprehensive history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people's participation in the Australian defence forces. This book reveals the courage, resilience and...

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 Read reviewDeep Time Dreaming

Deep Time Dreaming

Billy Griffiths

'People would have known about Australia before they saw it. Smoke billowing above the sea spoke of a land that lay beyond the horizon. A dense cloud of migrating birds may have pointed the way. But the first Australians were...

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A Coveted Possession

A Coveted Possession

Michael Atherton

What has lived with us, entertained us, travelled with us and symbolised Australian aspirations, only to end up gathering dust or even at the tip? It's not the car, or the washing machine, or the sewing machine . . . it's the...

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We Are Here

We Are Here

Fiona Harari

These are the last adult witnesses - in their own words.

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The Sydney Wars

The Sydney Wars

Stephen Gapps

The Sydney Wars tells the history of military engagements between Europeans and Aboriginal Australians - described as ‘this constant sort of war' by one early colonist - around the greater Sydney region.

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The Catch

The Catch

Anna Clark

In every coastal town in Australia, there's a bait shop and a boat ramp, and, in garages around the country, fishing rods are strung up waiting for their next outing. Many of us have a special fishing spot, and families pass on...

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Captured Lives

Captured Lives

Peter Monteath

Captured Lives peers behind the barbed wire veil that was drawn around people-both civilian internees and prisoners of war-deemed threats to Australia's security during the two world wars.

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We'll Show the World: Expo 88

We’ll Show the World: Expo 88

Jackie Ryan

How did one long and expensive party change a city forever?

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Where History Happened

Where History Happened

Peter Spearritt

Where History Happened reveals the hidden past of some of Australia's most intriguing towns and places, from mining settlements and whaling stations to monuments and historic houses in our capital cities.    

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The House

The House

Helen Pitt

The extraordinary story of the 20th century's most recognisable building, with new insights into the controversy and drama that surrounded its construction.

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Best We Forget

Best We Forget

Peter Cochrane

Best We Forget will challenge what you currently believe about twentieth-century Australian history

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Dissent: The Student Press in 1960s Australia

Dissent: The Student Press in 1960s Australia

Sally Percival Wood

A passionate portrayal of Australia's social awakening - the people, the politics, and the power of the student press.

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 Read reviewKiffy Rubbo: curating the 1970s

Kiffy Rubbo: curating the 1970s

Janine Burke, Helen Hughes

How one woman helped shape the Australian art world.

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The Story of Australia's People Volume II

The Story of Australia’s People Volume II

Geoffrey Blainey

In Volume II of The Story of Australia's People, Geoffrey Blainey continues his account of the history of this country from the early Gold Rush to the present day, completing the story of our nation and its people.<br...

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The Story of Australia's People: Volume 1

The Story of Australia’s People: Volume 1

Geoffrey Blainey

The vast, ancient land of Australia was settled in two main streams, far apart in time and origin. The first stream of immigrants came ashore some 50,000 years ago when the islands of Australia, Tasmania and New Guinea were one....

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The Battle Within: POWs in postwar Australia

The Battle Within: POWs in postwar Australia

Christina Twomey

Follows the stories of 15,000 Australian prisoners of war from the moment they were released by the Japanese at the end of World War II. Their struggle to rehabilitate themselves and to win compensation and acknowledgement from...

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The Fierce Country

The Fierce Country

Stephen Orr

The open spaces and isolated places outside Australia's cities have unsettled us from first European settlement to today. In this nail-biting book combining the notorious and little-known, author Stephen Orr has collected true...

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Skin Deep

Skin Deep

Liz Conor

Skin Deep looks at the preoccupations of European-Australians in their encounters with Aboriginal women and the tropes, types and perceptions that seeped into everyday settler-colonial thinking.Early erroneous...

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