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Mallee Country: Land, People, History

Richard Broome Charles Fahey Andrea Gaynor Katie Holmes



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Monash University Publishing
01 November 2019
History; Local history
Mallee Country tells the powerful history of mallee lands and people across southern Australia from Deep Time to the present. Carefully shaped and managed by Aboriginal people for over 50,000 years, mallee country was dramatically transformed by settlers, first with sheep and rabbits, then by flattening and burning the mallee to make way for wheat. Government backed settlement schemes devastated lives and country, but some farmers learnt how to survive the droughts, dust storms, mice, locusts and salinity - as well as the vagaries of international markets - to become some of Australia's most resilient agriculturalists. In mallee country, innovation and tenacity have been neighbours to hardship and failure.

Mallee Country is a story of how land and people shape each other. It is the story of how a landscape once derided by settlers as a 'howling wilderness' covered in 'dismal scrub' became home to citizens who delighted in mallee fauna and flora, and fought to conserve it for future generations. And it is the story of the dreams, sweat and sorrows of people who face an uncertain future of depopulation and climate change with creativity and hope.

'...a rich compendium that exposes the roots of many callous policies that continue state-sanctioned assaults on people and ecosystems. As tales of mass fish death, of drought-relief packages, and of billions of dollars allocated to dams and pipelines inundate the news, Mallee Country is a sobering reminder that we've seen it before. What is different now is the scale and urgency of the problems. Mallee Country is an urgent environmental history for these troubled times. As the authors forewarn, the super-imposition of rapid climate change will bring longer-term and wider-reaching consequences to the Mallee...

Mallee Country can be read as a history for the future; a warning of what happens when we forget to remember.' - Lilian Pearce, Australian Book Review
By:   Richard Broome, Charles Fahey, Andrea Gaynor, Katie Holmes
Imprint:   Monash University Publishing
Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm, 
ISBN:   9781925523126
ISBN 10:   1925523128
Pages:   416
Publication Date:   01 November 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Emeritus Professor Richard Broome, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia, has authored twelve books, including three on Indigenous Australians, including Aboriginal Australians (4th edition 2010). He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, and a Fellow and Vice President of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, Melbourne. Charles Fahey taught history at La Trobe University, Melbourne until his retirement in 2018. His research explores Australian labour, rural and mining history. Andrea Gaynor is Associate Professor of History, Chair of the History Discipline Group and Director of the Centre for Western Australian History at the University of Western Australia. Her research focuses on environmental history. Katie Holmes is Professor of History and Director of the Centre for the Study of the Inland at La Trobe University. Her work integrates environmental, gender and oral history and seeks to understand the experience of Australian settlement.

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