Book Launch – Sheila Fitzpatrick’s My Father’s Daughter

My Father’s Daughter
Melbourne University Press

Sheila Fitzpatrick in conversation with Jill Roe

Thursday, 19 August 2010
6 for 6.30pm, gleebooks, 49 Glebe Point Road, Glebe
$10/7 conc.
Bookings via 02 9660 2333, http://www.gleebooks.com.au

Sheila Fitzpatrick was taught from an early age to question authority. She learnt it from her father, the journalist and radical historian Brian Fitzpatrick. But very soon, she began to turn her questioning gaze on him. A pioneering economic historian, journalist and civil libertarian, Brian Fitzpatrick was a voice of tolerance in Australian politics for thirty years between the 1930s and his death in 1965. He is one of Australia’s greatest historians, with his historical works becoming standard texts of Australian economic history. Teasing apart the many layers of memory, Fitzpatrick reveals a complex portrait of an Australian family against a Cold War backdrop. As her relationship with her father fades from girlhood adoration to adolescent scepticism, she flees Melbourne for Oxford to start a new life. But it’s not so easy to escape being her father’s daughter. My Father’s Daughter is a vivid evocation of an Australian childhood; a personal memoir told with the piercing insight of an historian.

Sheila Fitzpatrick is Bernadotte E. Schmitt Distinguished Service Professor in Modern Russian History at the University of Chicago and an annual Visiting Professor at the University of Sydney. Her recent publications include Political Tourists: Travellers from Australia to the Soviet Union in the 1920s-1940s (edited with Carolyn Rasmussen, 2008), Against the Grain: Brian Fitzpatrick and Manning Clark in Australian History and Politics (edited with Stuart Macintyre, 2007), and Tear off the Masks! Identity and Imposture in Twentieth-Century Russia (2005).

Jill Roe’s prizewinning Stella Miles Franklin. A Biography was published by HarperCollins Australia in 2008, and is now available in pb. The biography has also been published in the US (Her Brilliant Career. The Life of Stella Miles Franklin, and is available internationally.

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