Vested Interests

February 5, 2011 at 8:43 am (book reviews)

I’m still madly reading history books. If you’re a writer researching a period of Australian history (including the little that’s known about Aboriginal lives before 1788), you need to read Geoffrey Blainey’s “Black Kettle and Full Moon” (I’m also trying to find “Triumph of the Nomads”, which is just about Aborigines) and “Australian Lives” by Michael Bosworth. Both of these books focus on all the small, daily details that writers need most.

So here’s a wonderful section from “Australian Lives” (as World War 2 caused rationing of clothes):

The ‘Victory’ suit was cut to reduce the amount of fabric used – lapels were smaller, cuffs were discarded, buttons were reduced to a minimum, but worst of all, the government decreed that men could live and work without a waistcoat. This caused a tremendous outcry, which was so loud and so persistent, that eventully the government gave in and allowed the wearing of waistcoats to continue.

This random photo brought to you by the holiday CJ and I have just returned from. All the details and many pretty photos (including horseriding!) are happening for the next week or so at


  1. Ben (Crispin) said,

    ‘They may take our lives… but they’ll never take our WAISTCOATS!’

  2. Louise Curtis said,

    Our British heritage is still good and obvious.


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