To the Islands

To the Islands : White Australia and the Malay Archipelago since 1788

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To the Islands traces the persistence across two centuries of a regional idea expressed variously as Australasia, the Malay Archipelago and 'the Islands.' The book explores the manifestations of this idea in trade, travel, investment and diplomatic interactions between Australia and its island neighbors from the early years of British colonization to the present day.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 266 pages
  • 152.4 x 228.6 x 22.86mm | 408.23g
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739120522
  • 9780739120521
  • 1,841,517

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 Empress of the Southern Wave Chapter 3 Across Jewelled Seas Chapter 4 "The Whole Thing is Very Motley Oriental" Chapter 5 A Share in the Place Chapter 6 Arc of Instability Chapter 7 Culture, Region and Economy Chapter 8 Conclusion
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Review quote

Australia's historical interactions with Southeast Asia and the Southwest Pacific are something of a blind spot, onto which Paul Battersby's book turns a much needed searchlight. Setting out to write Australia into regional affairs, it puts today's events in the context of past modes of transportation, investment, security, and travel, as well as economic and territorial rivalries. To the Islands covers two centuries of Australian engagement informatively, entertainingly, and accessibly. It offers a wider perspective and a disincentive to any who might want to write the region off. -- Alison Broinowski, Australian National University Australians and persons interested in Australia will find this book a useful guide to further reading on this topic. Recommended. CHOICE A multifaceted book, it is structured chronologically around the thematic organisation and analysis of a vast array of mostly Australian primary sources. Particularly useful for the personal accounts, as well as for the mass of trade data, charts and statistics it contains, the books is a very valuable addition to the history of Australia's engagement with Asia... It is a very useful resource for academics and policymakers alike and contributes new evidence about the extent of ordinary Australians' connections to Asia. Some years ago, I convened an Engaging Asia course at the Australian National University-I wish this book had been available then. Journal Of Southeast Asian Studies To the Islands is a fascinating account of Australia's relations with Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands in the 19th and 20th centuries. Usually, Australia is best remembered for its niggardly and obnoxious White Australia Policy. In this book, Paul Battersby tells a far more complex and an altogether more nuanced story of Australian tourists, businessmen and political leaders and their encounters with the region. The White Australia Policy is an important part of this story, as is the fear, racism and colonial mentality that drove it, but Paul Battersby also alerts us to the important relationships that underpinned the little studied linkages Australians developed throughout the region. To the Islands is an original contribution to the scholarship on Australian-Asian relations. Paul Battersby provides a new perspective that places Australia in a global system of production and exchange, mining the archives for some new and interesting data. He also 'populates' this relationship with accounts of the Australians who encountered the region. Some were undoubtedly colourful characters, but Battersby also introduces his readers to the more average Australian and their experiences of the region. The book is well-researched, well-illustrated, and well-written. Fascinating and important. -- Kevin Hewison, University of North Carolina Battersby's excitement is laudable, and infectious. -- Donald Denoon, Australian National University
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About Paul Battersby

Paul Battersby is senior lecturer in globalisation and cultural diversity at RMIT University.
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