Catalogue


Imagining the fifties : private sentiment and political culture in Menzies' Australia /
John Murphy.
imprint
Sydney : UNSW Press ; Annandale, NSW, Australia : Pluto Press, 2000.
description
xii, 264 p., [8] p. of plates : ill. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0868406902
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Sydney : UNSW Press ; Annandale, NSW, Australia : Pluto Press, 2000.
isbn
0868406902
catalogue key
4059267
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 247-255) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
John Murphy is an associate professor, teaching politics and history at RMIT University in Melbourne.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2001-01-01:
Murphy argues that contemporary Australian nostalgia for the 1950s as a stable, complacent, prosperous period has obscured its more contradictory, dynamic aspects. Chapters examine the aura surrounding the concept of solid, responsible citizenship-- "the Australian way of life"--propounded by Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies in the light of political opposition by Australia's "discontents," who criticized government policies concerning immigration, labor, and Aborigines. He concludes that the years were not static but filled with profound change and doubt. Full employment and economic growth were marred by inflation and a nagging fear that the awful years of the Great Depression might return or the Cold War might heat up. The 1950s should not be seen as "one seamless experience." Events before 1955 flowed from post-WW II policies and circumstances, whereas events after 1955 seeded the vibrant, youthful generation of the late 1960s, who opposed "suburban isolation, the drudgery of constrictive gender roles, and middle class values" as well as the Vietnam conflict. Similarities with American political and societal development are obvious. Nicely organized, with illustrations and notes, this volume is highly recommended for advanced undergraduates, graduates, and faculty. W. W. Reinhardt; Randolph-Macon College
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, January 2001
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Using sources that include popular magazines, opinion polls, archives and newspapers, John Murphy explores the private sentiments of the Australian middle class during the 1950s as the nation moved from hope to drabness and conformity.
Main Description
Our memory of the post-war years are dominated by myths - the boom years of unprecedented prosperity and stability. John Murphy reveals the much more complex reality behind these myths. The book focuses on the sentiments and attitudes of the middle-class constituency that kept the Menzies government in power after 1949.
Table of Contents
List of illustrationsp. viii
List of figures and tablesp. ix
Acknowledgementsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Interiors
The pursuit of private happinessp. 13
Manhoodp. 31
Womanhoodp. 42
Intimacyp. 55
The Australian way of lifep. 66
Politics
The rewards of the good citizenp. 81
'A war-haunted world'p. 91
An unreliable boomp. 105
The Petrov electionp. 121
The meanings of homep. 136
Discontents
Immigration and assimilationp. 149
'Dog licences' and indigenous citizensp. 168
'Pledging the future'p. 185
The housewife and the Man in the Grey Flannel Suitp. 199
Conclusionp. 217
Notesp. 223
Sourcesp. 247
Indexp. 256
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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