On being Australian

A provocation

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  • Published 20160202
  • ISBN: 978-1-925240-80-1
  • Extent: 264pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook

MY FATHER, ALEX Carey, a fourth-generation Australian, was a lefty and an activist, who worked long hours as a university lecturer. But despite – or perhaps because of – being a largely absent father, he was my childhood hero. I marched with him in peace protests and listened to him address anti-war rallies; I wore a Troops Out badge to Sutherland North Primary School and showed photos of napalmed Vietnamese peasants to friends whose older brothers had been conscripted. Like my father, I exerted little influence.

‘Australians are sheep,’ Dad bleated regularly, as his earnest anti-war appeals fell on deaf ears. He had spent the first thirty years of his life on the family sheep station in Western Australia and several years as shearer; he knew a thing or two about sheep.

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About the author

Gabrielle Carey (1959–2023)

Gabrielle Carey published her first co-written book, Puberty Blues (McPhee Gribble), in 1979. She went on to publish In My Father’s House (Pan Macmillan,...

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