Australia: A New History of the Great Southern Land

Paperback (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $1.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 92%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (17) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $4.57   
  • Used (11) from $1.99   


Australia: A New History of the Great Southern Land is a major new account that places Australia's history fully within a global context, drawing on sources from the United States, Britain, South Africa, and Canada, as well as within Australia itself.

In a compelling narrative, acclaimed historian Frank Welsh traces the history of the land from scattered convict settlements to the formation of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901 and on to today's thriving independent nation, exposing many national myths in the process. This book also explores the dark side of Australia's history: the long-continued "White Australia" policy, which bedeviled foreign policy for more than a century; the still-tortured official relationship with the Aboriginal peoples; the subordination of women; and the flaws in the constitution. Also examined is Australia's uneasy relationship with its Asian neighbors, and its isolation from Britain and the United States, its traditional allies.

Original, provocative, and witty, Australia is the most comprehensive single-volume history of Australia yet published. It makes a strong claim to becoming the standard work on this fascinating and often misunderstood country.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Welsh (The Four Nations: A History of the United Kingdom) likes to tackle big projects. Noting at the outset that he is in fact English, he writes effusively about Australia, citing UN indexes on health, education, and other quality-of-life measures on which the country gets top marks, placing it among the finalists as "the most successful society in the world." He then details its unpromising start, showing that it was repeatedly passed over by explorers, who thought its promise as a colony was poor. Australia's great distance from the mother country contributed to its distinct development as arguably the most independent of the former British colonies, though it remains a part of the Commonwealth. Comparing Australia to other Crown colonies, particularly South Africa, Welsh underscores the backward thinking that fueled white Australia's anti-aboriginal policy, which lasted from the 19th century through the 1960s and was harsher even than Jim Crow. Where Robert Hughes's The Fatal Shore fixed on Australia's origins as a penal colony, Welsh's narrative finishes with current events. Bogging down a little in the inevitable political hopscotch of Whigs and Tories, he tries to keep the tone light, helped by some of the personalities he sketches. As Welsh notes, the U.S. media offer relatively little coverage of Australia, and he hopes to correct that imbalance. In that spirit, his book is recommended for public and academic libraries.-Robert Moore, Bristol Myers Squibb Co., North Billerica, MA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585678617
  • Publisher: The Overlook Press
  • Publication date: 7/29/2008
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 768
  • Sales rank: 875,775
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Terra Australis nondum cognita
2 The New Australians
3 Whigs and tories
4 Occupied notices
5 Representative government
6 The capacity of govern themselves
7 The transition to responsible government
8 Exploration and expansion
9 Federation
10 The commonwealth feels its way
11 War and peace
12 The Second World War and its aftermath
13 The shadows of Vietnam
14 It's time
15 The coalition strikes back
App Australian and British rulers
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)