Wakefield Press is an independent book publishing company based in Adelaide, South Australia.


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Mothers in ARMS

Forced adoption - mothers find a voice

Meg Hale

Mothers in ARMS tells the inside story of the women who formed the Australian Relinquishing Mothers Society in South Australia. These mothers were determined to fight for their right to find the children taken from them through forced adoption by doctors, nurses, social workers and religious figures - often with the support of government agencies. They were told they had willingly abandoned their children and had no rights. But they would not be stopped. From an uncertain start in 1982, they gained strength and confidence. ...
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Mothers in ARMS
Pasts Present

History at Australia's third university

Wilfrid Prest

This 'history of History' provides a series of perspectives on a major academic discipline at the University of Adelaide, from colonial times to the present. Essays by current and former academics and students explore the distinctive character of Adelaide's History Department. They highlight changing fashions and fortunes in modes of research, teaching and governance, and the numerous ways in which the university's historians interacted with civic, state, national and international communities. ...
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Pasts Present
The Diggers' Doctor

The fortunate life of Col. Donald Beard, AM, RFD, ED (Retd)

Ashley Mallett

A man of substance in war and in peace, Dr Donald Beard, AM, is a leader, and known for his compassion, humility and charm. The Diggers' Doctor tells of his extraordinary life as a surgeon, as well as his love of cricket and deep friendship with cricketers, including Sir Donald Bradman. It was in the Beards' backyard that The Don faced Jeff Thomson and hit his last cricket ball. ...
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The Diggers' Doctor
Nicholas Folland

Lisa Slade, Nicholas Folland

This book explores Nicholas Folland's work through a collection of illustrated essays that encompass the artist's captivating family history and abiding interest in extreme climates and narratives of ill-fated exploration. The essays are illuminated by brief accounts of curiosity and adventure - from making boats in bottles to snippets cut from art history. As well as images of the artist's own work, Nicholas Folland also reproduces works of art from the Art Gallery of South Australia's collection that invigorate a visual conversation with his work. ...
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Nicholas Folland
Adelaide's Dissenting Headmaster

John Lorenzo Young and his premier private school

Diana Chessell

The discovery of schoolboy signatures - hidden under peeling wallpaper in an old Adelaide schoolhouse for 130 years - has led to this documentary history of John Lorenzo Young's school and its 1600 students, among them the leading lights of the colony and many still prominent in South Australian business and academic life today. John Lorenzo Young, the dissenting headmaster, was a brilliant and creative teacher, a graduate in the 'sciences of the enlightenment' from King's College London. He taught these new sciences to the sons of Adelaide's dissenting majority from 1852-1880, just 16 years after settlement. ...
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Adelaide's Dissenting Headmaster
The Noon Lady of Towitta

A mystery

Patricia Sumerling

Bertha Schippan, beautiful but headstrong daughter of a Wendish-German family, is murdered on New Year's Day, 1902. A posse of Adelaide police arrive at the family's lonely Murray Flats farm thirty-six hours later, but by the time an Aboriginal tracker can start his work, a gale has blown all clues away. ...

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The Noon Lady of Towitta
Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty

A political biography

Dino Hodge

This book records the change in public discourse over issues of homosexuality - from morality to state security and then civil liberties. Don Dunstan worked as a member of parliament for more than twenty-five years, and then throughout the remainder of his life, to realise his vision of full equality for same-sex attracted citizens. He focused on both legislative and cultural reforms, and introduced changes to the Police Force that were unprecedented and strongly resisted. ...
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Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty
Bodies of Thought

Twelve Australian choreographers

Erin Brannigan, Virginia Baxter

Bodies of Thought: 12 Australian Choreographers features a generation of award-winning, innovative Australian choreographers with international reputations and legacies of influence.

Focusing on a work by each artist - with an interview and an essay by a leading dance scholar - this groundbreaking book offers invaluable insights into the creation of remarkable works, at a time when Australian dance is enjoying international acclaim. ...
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Bodies of Thought
Chequered Lives

John Barton Hack and Stephen Hack and the early days of South Australia

Iola Mathews, Chris Durrant

Chequered Lives is the fascinating story of a Quaker family from England who camped on the beach in 1837 before the city of Adelaide was created, but rose to owning a 3000-acre estate in the Adelaide Hills. Barton Hack built his first house where the Adelaide Railway station now stands, became a merchant who owned ships, a whaling station and the first vineyard in the Province, and was chairman of the first Chamber of Commerce in Australia. His younger brother Stephen became a grazier and explorer. ...
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Chequered Lives
Born to Swim

The Diaries of Sally Foster and Evelyn de Lacy, Olympic Swimmers

Evelyn de Lacy, Sally Foster

In May 1936, the Australian Olympic team set sail for Berlin with a live kangaroo for a mascot. On board was Western Australian swimmer Evelyn de Lacy who recorded her experiences in a diary. Seventy-six years later her grandniece, Sally Foster, qualified for the London Olympics. Inspired by Evelyn's words she decided to write her own diary.

Born to Swim tells the story of two young Australians, of the times they lived in and the challenges faced as they lived their Olympic dream. ...
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Born to Swim