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Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty

A political biography

Dino Hodge

Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty
Don Dunstan, Premier of South Australia in the late 1960s and throughout the 1970s, is acknowledged as one of Australia's foremost civil rights advocates of the twentieth century. He actively promoted the rights of Indigenous Australians and women, and he passionately pursued multiculturalism. More than any other political leader in the country's history, Dunstan championed the rights of homosexual citizens at a time when they were treated as criminals, classified as insane, and regarded as outcasts. He was also bisexual.

This book records the change in public discourse over issues of homosexuality - from morality to state security and then civil liberties. 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. His efforts and the backlash he suffered are fully documented here for the first time, finally giving due recognition to one of the country's most remarkable champions of human rights.

Praise for Don Dunstan, Intimacy and Liberty:
'This book will inform teaching and research across a broad canvas of Australian history. I commend it as both intellectually compelling and thoroughly enjoyable.' - Barbara Baird, Australian Historical Studies

'The biography has been much needed to reveal more clearly the outstanding achievements of the Dunstan era and the special humanity of the man himself.' - Maggie Tate, Global Media Post

'A well-presented book ... Dunstan lived a fascinating life and Hodge tells his version of the story with style and flair.' - Lyndon Megarrity, Australian Book Review

'In relating much of his personal life, in the final section of the book in particular, a real balance has been achieved in melding the public and personal character of this extraordinary Australian. By following the sexuality aspects of social policy as a primary lens in this story Dr Hodge has given us a substantial appreciation of Dunstan’s character in its political context...' - Francis Good, Oral History Australia

'I found Hodge’s biography to be very engaging, clearly written, and extensively researched and sourced. Reading it is an enjoyable and a rewarding experience. Hodge has been respectful of his subject, avoided sensationalising an unorthodox lifestyle and is sympatico with Dunstan's life’s objectives. The volume is liberally illustrated with photos spanning Dunstan's life, friends and activities. it is well indexed, and provides a useful chronology and list of key individuals, important to researchers and readers alike...I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in social change, justice and civil liberties.' - Editorial Team, Civil Liberties of Australia

Dino Hodge is author of two oral history books, Did You Meet any Malagas? (1993), about Darwin's multi-racial gay community, and The Fall Upward (1996), documenting spiritual beliefs and practices of lesbian women and gay men. A theatrical presentation on Darwin's homosexual personalities, His Own Special Friend, premiered in 1993. It was adapted for performance in an international festival of one act plays that was held in New York during June 1994 to mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Stonewall Riot. He is co-editor of a secondary school social studies text on Aboriginal education, You Don't Get Degrees in Weetbix Boxes (1994). Born and raised in Adelaide, Hodge lived for many years in the Northern Territory before settling in Melbourne. He has a PhD in history from the University of Melbourne.
Category Biography/Autobiography/True Stories
Format Paperback
Size 234 x 160 mm
ISBN 9781743052969
Extent 472 pages
Price: AU$39.95 including GST
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