OTD in 1840, the transportation of British convicts to the New South Wales colony is abolished. The Fatal Shore: The Epic of Australia’s Founding by Robert Hughes is a history of the birth of Australia out of the suffering and brutality of Britain’s convict transportation system. It also addresses the historical, political and sociological reasons that led to British settlement.

The British Government began transporting convicts overseas to American colonies in the early 17th century. When transportation ended with the … More

The First Fleet was the 11 ships that departed from Portsmouth, England, on 13 May 1787 to found the penal colony that became Australia. The Fleet consisted of two Royal Navy vessels, three store ships & six convict transports, carrying between 1,000 & 1,500 convicts, marines, seamen, civil officers & free people and a large quantity of stores.

In the twenty-eighth year of the reign of King George III, the British Government sent a fleet to colonize Australia. … More

In the 18th century, as European colonization proceeded apace, one continent remained to be discovered, the mythical Terra Australis incognita. This, the largest island-continent, had been inhabited for over 60,000 years by the Aborigines, who were described by the first explorers as the ‘miserablest people in the world’. This perception was the beginning of a deep and long-lasting misapprehension, which the authors resoundingly dispel in this lively social and cultural history.

They explore how the aborigines actually came to be in Australia, their extraordinary rituals and ‘Dreamings’, and the importance of … More