Category: Political and Economic History

The Curious Creation of the Crusader States

Reading time: 7 minutes
A major holy land for three of the world’s largest, most influential religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, the area of the levant has long been hotly contested.
After several centuries of ownership and Christian domination under the Roman Empire and later the Byzantine Empire, the holy land of Jerusalem and the surrounding area fell into the hands of the Muslims in 969 AD under the Fatimids, and later the Seljuq Turks.

Read More

In The Australian Wars, Rachel Perkins dispenses with the myth Aboriginal people didn’t fight back

Reading time: 5 minutes
The Australian Wars is a new three-part TV series directed and produced by Arrernte and Kalkadoon nations filmmaker Rachel Perkins. Perkins travels across vast territory to capture key aspects of a war that lasted more than 100 years, from the landing of the First Fleet in 1788 until the 1920s.

The series traces some of the key phases, sites and underlying features of frontier wars here on home soil.

Read More

LAND: HOW THE HUNGER FOR OWNERSHIP SHAPED THE MODERN WORLD – BOOK REVIEW

Reading time: 2 minutes
Land—whether meadow or mountainside, desert or peat bog, parkland or pasture, suburb or city—is central to our existence. It quite literally underlies and underpins everything. Employing the keen intellect, insatiable curiosity, and narrative verve that are the foundations of his previous bestselling works, Simon Winchester examines what we human beings are doing—and have done—with the billions of acres that together make up the solid surface of our planet.

Read More

Why Aboriginal Australian ‘Ununiformed Warriors’ Qualify for the Australian War Memorial

Reading time: 5 minutes
Last year, chair of the Australian War Memorial Kim Beazley called for First Nations “guerilla campaigns” of the Frontier Wars to be included in the Australian War Memorial. His bid was criticised by the RSL Australia’s president Major General Greg Melick.
Melick argued Indigenous casualties of the Frontier Wars could not be honoured at the War Memorial because they did not fight “in uniform”. But the Australian War Memorial already honours “ununiformed” First Nations soldiers – namely Dayak people who assisted in Borneo during World War 2.

Read More

Why Did Britain Change its Stance on Slavery?

Reading time: 7 minutes
By the 1730s, Britain was the largest slave-trading Empire in the world. It is estimated that between 1640 and 1800, private British citizens across the Empire transported 3.1 million Africans as slaves.
Yet less than seven years later, the British parliament officially abolished slavery. And they didn’t stop there. The British government then proceeded to pressure allies and other European nations such as Portugal, Spain and France to also abolish slavery, and devoted significant Royal Navy resources to intercept and arrest slaving ships off the coast of Africa.

Read More
Loading