Frontier as a Not Very Nice Place


Les Rosenblatt in Arena 109…

Bruce Pascoe in Convincing Ground, referring to the early Australian frontier, says: “The frontier was a place confused by the grandeur of liberal theology coming out of London and the chaos of malice, greed, and opportunistic racism at the coal face. The present is afflicted by all those things but with the added retardation of apathy and profound ignorance.”

A review of Convincing Ground is here (as a pdf)

And from the blurb on a book I bought yesterday,

The Real Matilda: Women and Identiyy in Australia 1788 to 1975 by Miriam Dixson ($1.99)
“Miriam Dixon turns to our colonial beginnings and finds a past steeped in negative feelings about women. She argues that we must, in the first instance, look at the males who were our founding fathers – the puritanical and self-doubting elite, the convicts, the working class and the depressed Irish. To make up for their own feelings of emptiness, these men tried – largely unconsciously – to ensure that their women felt even less complete as human beings than they did.”


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