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Australian Voices, 1788-1918 presents a broad social history of colonial, predominantly European, Australian life, focusing on the ordinary and the every day, through the words of contemporary Australians, and a handful of visitors. This atmospheric anthology comprises letters and diary entries, memoirs and reminiscences supported by photographs, etchings and paintings drawn from the period between the arrival of the First Fleet to the end of First World War. The extracts presented here provide the reader with a window into the ways many Australians lived and thought during their country's pioneering days: their first person accounts are often emotional, sometimes humorous, occasionally idealistic, frequently cynical and critical. These Australian voices are presented chronologically, in chapters covering first impressions; life on the land; life in the towns and cities; home life; leisure and entertainment; and the home front in wartime. Throughout, there is evidence of a developing sense of Australianness and a growing understanding of the uniqueness and character of the land and its people.

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