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

Follow us on Twitter

Red Professor - ebook: pdf

The Cold War life of Fred Rose

Peter Monteath, Valerie Munt

Red Professor - ebook: pdf
Fred Rose's life takes us through rip-roaring tales from Australia's northern frontier to enthralling intellectual tussles over kinship systems and political dramas as he runs rings around his Petrov inquisitors.

More than any other injustice, the abuse of Aborigines leads him into the Communist Party in 1942. His move to academic life in what he insisted on calling the German Democratic Republic made him a dissident against anthropological orthodoxies in the Soviet Bloc as he had been in Australia. Those final three decades also see his informing on his children to his Stasi handlers.

Out of relentless research, Peter Monteath and Valerie Munt present an engrossing portrait of the short twentieth century from Rose's birth during the Great War to his death in Berlin shortly after the Wall comes down. The result is unputdownable for its sweep of events while causing us to reflect on how someone can be heroic and horrendous, appalling and admirable.

Shortlisted for the Prize for Australian History in the 2016 Prime Minister's Literary Awards

Praise for Red Professor:
'The actual information uncovered by Monteath and Munt is impressive ... Red Professor is an important book.' - Judges' comments, Prime Minister's Literary Awards

'A vivid, comprehensively researched and engrossing study of a man whose objective to research Aboriginal life and culture thoroughly and sensitively was thwarted at every turn by authorities wedded to an “assimilationist” policy or who found his leftist politics repugnant or distasteful. As an academic working in Australian studies, this book spoke to me both professionally and personally.' - Christine Nicholls, The Conversation

'Rose has been effectively written out of the intellectual history of Australia despite the emblematic nature of his fate. The anthropological establishment preserves practically no memory of his pioneering work on Groote Eylandt in the 1930s; the radical intelligentsia whose circles he once frequented have long since moved on from the concerns that shaped his life. There is a reason for this neglect, a single, all-dominating reason: the episode that lies at the heart of [this] subtle new biography ...' - Nicolas Rothwell, The Weekend Australian

'Red Professor provides a fascinating glimpse of the interpersonal workings of espionage, of the intimacy between informant and handler--in Rose's case a relationship more committed and more openly communicative than that between husband and wife.' - Melinda Hinkson, Arena Magazine

'The book opens in 1976 at a dinner in East Berlin with Gough Whitlam and his United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) entourage reminiscing with Fred and Edith about Australian politics, Aboriginal land rights - and their shared bete noire Sir John Kerr! After a delightful evening Fred reported their conversation in full, to his Stasi handlers. The authors ask "What kind of man would do that?" By the end of this wonderfully researched account, we can answer that question and - almost - understand how Fred Rose became that man.' - Donald Denoon, Labour History Journal 2016, No. 110

'An extensively researched work, lucidly written and judiciously argued ... A literary monument to the memory of a champion of the rights of Aborigines, indeed, a scholar whose life’s work as an anthropologist would have otherwise been totally forgotten ... One can only wish this considerable work the widest possible circulation.' - Dr. John A. Moses, Honest History

'A remarkably informative and at the same time easy to read biography ... Everyone interested in recent world and Australian history should have a copy.' - Nic Klaassen, Flinders Ranges Research

'I always like a good spy story and couldn’t put this book down ... a tale well told with the evidence of weighty research.' - Patricia Sumerling, Historical Society of South Australia newsletter

'The level and depth of research undertaken by Monteath and Munt in this biography is astounding and their narrative is masterly and captivating. This is not a dry academic treatment of the subject but a very readable and entertaining story of a man of intelligence, character and a fair share of human failings.' - Maurie O'Connor, Food, Wine, Travel

'A gripping and often chilling account of this chameleon-like man, set in a sweeping backdrop of the 20th century.' - Mary Ann Elliott, The Chronicle, Toowoomba

'A real treat for those interested in more about those heady times during the Cold War and the Petrov Affair.' - Linda Guthrie, ReadPlus

'Red Professor is a highly readable biography. It is fast-paced and aimed at a broad audience ... The authors note that the breadth of the subjects they covered in their biography placed them, at times, outside their intellectual comfort zones. They are to be congratulated for weaving together many different subjects.' - Toby Borman, Journal of Pacific History, Vol. 51, No. 1

'This work is set to become a classic of Australian historical non-fiction.' - Christine Nicholls, InDaily

'Indeed, it is an engrossing read.' - Robert Tonkinson, Anthropological Forum

Peter Monteath teaches History in the School of International Studies at Flinders University in Adelaide, Australia. He is also a Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. He is the author of POW: Australian Prisoners of War in Hitler's Reich (PanMacmillan 2011). His most recent book with Wakefield Press is Interned: Torrens Island 1914–1915 (2014).

Valerie Munt is an Adjunct Lecturer in History in the School of International Studies at Flinders University. She was born and educated in Adelaide, graduating with an Honours Degree in History and a PhD from Flinders University and a Masters degree in Education from the University of South Australia. She was tutor in Modern European History at Flinders University from 2005 to 2010. Her current research interests are in the history of Anthropology and the history of ideas.
Category Biography/Autobiography/True Stories
Format Ebook - PDF
Size 234 x 160 mm
ISBN 9781743052280
Extent 400 pages
Price: AU$19.95 including GST
Quantity 1 (this product is downloadable)
Add to wish list