The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia's Founding
2 journalers for this copy...
all that pain and screaming
with lots of splash of blood letting.
This book is part of a trade. Where I send off books I've already read and get some new ones to read in their place. What could be a better deal?
Later: I've read a fair amount about Australian history, but nothing with this much focus on the origins of the transportation-of-convicts and the overwhelming influence that this had on the settlement, politics, and social structure. It ranges from the political debates and compromises to the personal stories of specific convicts and the ways in which the selection of those to be transported was engineered to promote a sustainable society. The brutality of the system is expressed in many chapters - not only on the convicts and those who were in charge of them, but the fallout of all this on the native population. And there are some shining lights amid the darkness, people who worked to ameliorate the worst of the abuses, and others who survived them and went on to become civic leaders in their own right.
I was bemused to come across a section on Sir John Franklin, noted (and tragic) Arctic explorer; I knew he'd spent time as the governor of Tasmania, with some controversy as to his efficacy (or lack thereof) in the post, so it was interesting to see his term there as part of Australian history rather than as an episode in his own life.
The book wraps up with descriptions of the attempts to erase the convict past - few buildings from the period survive, though some of those that do have become historic sites, now that people are more interested in knowing ALL the history. Fascinating book!
WILD RELEASE NOTES: