Oh, Don

It started innocently enough. In preparation for our launch of Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty, we’ve been throwing some costume ideas around the office. Seventies, defs. This is the man who made those hot pink shorts so famous (see the book cover for proof). There’s also that mini yukata from his resignation. The paisley blazer at his 70th. Or whatever it is that’s going on here.

How would we ever live up to his sartorial standards?

And then our very own Michael Deves dug out this little gem:

Michael and Jenny, Santorini












The white Levis! The leather bag! The sandals! The setting! What a man!

This was promptly followed by Liz’s adorable schoolgirl photo from around the same time:

Claire, Deb and Liz 1972











If I had that blue dress, I would wear it every day – just by the by. Points for guessing which one’s Liz!

To top it all, Michael Bollen pulled out this doozy:

Michael, mid-seventies













Ain’t nothing can compete with that hair.

And then, just to really get into the mood of the thing, Devesy called our attention to this cultural time capsule:

Someone better come check on us, because WP HQ is timewarping hard right now.

This is but a taste of some of the delights that will be on show at the launch of Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty on the 22 May. Yes, we will be dressing up, and yes, it will be a riot – come join us for the fun!

Don Dunstan launch invite

From the archives

It’s true: Geoffrey Abbott’s Amazing True Stories of Female Executions contains some of the best collected tales of martyrs, murderesses and madwomen you’ll ever read.

It’s also pretty grisly stuff.

There’s the Reading Baby-farmer, who tied ribbons around the necks of her young victims and dumped them in the Thames, and the Yorkshire Witch, who sold potions for good health that turned out, incidentally, to be fatal.

Almost worse than the crimes themselves, are the punishments devised for the guilty. A description of thumbscrews explains the process of screws cutting into the wicks of the victim’s fingernails, concluding:

In some parts, Scotland in particular, thumbscrews were also known as pilliwinks, pilniwinks, penny-winks or pyrowinks: whatever their name, the result was pain.

Indeed. And then there are the witches’ bridles – the less said on that topic the better. And poor Margaret Clitheroe, a martyr whose hand was taken from her corpse and preserved in a reliquary. It appears that particular hand is lost, but here‘s St James’s, which I’m sure looks much the same, ie gross.

The problem with all this, is that I just. can’t. stop. reading.