Blogging the Bookshelf

Blogging my bookshelf – one book at a time

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Entries Tagged as 'History'

Queensland and the Federation Convention – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn

October 4th, 2012 · Comments Off on Queensland and the Federation Convention – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn · Democracy, History, Politics, Queensland

Even before federation, the colony of Queensland preferred to do things differently. In 1898 the Queensland government wanted to have its representative to the Melbourne convention on federation elected directly by the people. All other colonies appointed their representatives from their parliaments. Queensland finally reused to send anyone.

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A Good Deal of Blood – “Burr” – Gore Vidal

September 25th, 2012 · Comments Off on A Good Deal of Blood – “Burr” – Gore Vidal · Extremism, History, Ideology, Politics

At the time of the execution of the King and Queen, their portraits hung on the walls of our Senate chamber (and everyone, including Mrs. Bingham, remarked how much she resembled Marie Antoinette). After the beheadings, various Republicans—including Freneau—wanted the portraits taken down. Jefferson’s view of the portraits is unknown but he did delight in […]

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Beliefs About The Past – “Burr” – Gore Vidal

September 21st, 2012 · Comments Off on Beliefs About The Past – “Burr” – Gore Vidal · History

I am afraid that as people grow old there is a tendency for them to believe that what the past ought to have been it was.

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Colonel Burr – “Burr” – Gore Vidal

September 19th, 2012 · Comments Off on Colonel Burr – “Burr” – Gore Vidal · History, US Politics

In 1804 Colonel Burr—then vice-president of the United States—shot and killed General Alexander Hamilton in a duel. Three years after this lamentable affair, Colonel Burr was arrested by order of President Thomas Jefferson and charged with treason for having wanted to break up the United States. A court presided over by Chief Justice John Marshall […]

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Long on the 1% – “Huey Long”, T. Harry Williams

September 14th, 2012 · Comments Off on Long on the 1% – “Huey Long”, T. Harry Williams · Economics, History, Policy

Springing another Long innovation on the Senate, he had prepared and mounted a number of charts showing the continuing concentration of wealth in the country, and as he explained the bills, he pointed in schoolmaster fashion to data on the charts. His speech was largely a rehash of things he had said before, but in […]

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Ataturk’s Message to Australia – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer

August 31st, 2012 · Comments Off on Ataturk’s Message to Australia – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer · Anzac, History, Humanism, Philosophy, War, WW1

In 1934 Atatürk learned that a ship carrying relatives of fallen Allied soldiers had docked near Gallipoli and that its passengers were mounting at the site. He sent them a moving message that is now chiseled, in English translation, into a memorial stone there. “Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives,” he […]

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Ataturk and Family Names – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer

August 29th, 2012 · Comments Off on Ataturk and Family Names – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer · History

Since time immemorial, Turkish life had been centered on villages and clans small enough that in each there was likely to be only one Abdullah, one Hikmet and one Fatma. Those days were gone, and as a logical result of his Westernizing impulse, Kemal decreed that each citizen must have a last name. The head […]

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Ataturk and Gallipoli – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer

August 28th, 2012 · Comments Off on Ataturk and Gallipoli – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer · Anzac, Culture, History, War, WW1

Turkey’s experience as an ally of Kaiser Wilhelm’s Germany was disastrous, with one shining exception. To the astonishment of Europe and the world, in 1915 a Turkish force managed to resist and then repel British-led invaders whose battle plan had been drawn up by no less a personage than First Lord of the Admiralty Winston […]

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Ataturk and Modernisation – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer

August 28th, 2012 · Comments Off on Ataturk and Modernisation – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer · Culture, History

During postings in Istanbul, Tripoli, Cairo, Damascus and Sofia, and in trips to Germany and Austria, Kemal (Ataturk) became aware of the wider world and the currents that were surging through it. He learned French and devoured the works of Voltaire and Rousseau, together with translations of Thomas Hobbes and John Stuart Mill. They helped […]

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Ataturk’s Birthplace – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer

August 28th, 2012 · Comments Off on Ataturk’s Birthplace – “Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds”, Stephen Kinzer · Culture, History

This titanic figure (Ataturk) was born in 1880 or 1881 to a humble family in Salonika, now the Greek city of Thessaloniki, a thriving port on the outer edge of the crumbling Ottoman Empire.

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