Rusted Off: Why Country Australia Is Fed Up (Paperback)

Rusted Off: Why Country Australia Is Fed Up By Gabrielle Chan Cover Image
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Telling the story of Australia as it is today, Gabrielle Chan has gone hyper-local. Unpacking the small towns around where she lives and the communities that keep them going through threat and times of plenty. With half her year spent in Canberra, reporting from Parliament House, and half her year in the sticks, she really does have a unique perspective. The Great Divide between city and country is only one subject that arises. The National Party talks about farmers, but what about those who live in regional towns? Her forensic focus in the nearby towns is on ordinary lives not often seen, and the conversations in this book are broad, national and at times international; immigration, transport, health, the NBN, globalization, and tariffs. Gabrielle also draws on her own observations about community. Newcomers initially face strong distrust based on money or race, but once you are accepted, there is a strong belonging and interaction, much more so than her experience in the city. Middle class people in the city, like Gabrielle, show compassion for poverty or racial difference, but there is little interaction with the "other." That is the gift the country gave her. Gabrielle has spent 30 years covering politics and lived 20 of those years in the country. Her kids were raised in country schools where she did her time on school councils, watching the lives of fellow parents and their kids from the poorest to the richest rural families. Gabrielle served on community groups grappling with loss of population, economic recession and mundane parking issues. She has witnessed fiery town meetings dealing with bank closures and doctor shortages. She has felt parents' extraordinary losses to ordinary causes like car accidents, drugs, and crime in a small town. And all this while documenting the modern Australian political story. This book is both the broad and the narrow, the personal and the public. There is no other book like this in Australia and Gabrielle is the only person to write it.

About the Author

Gabrielle Chan is a journalist with 30 years experience, mostly on the Australian but in latter years at the ABC, the Hoopla and now at Guardian Australia. She has written/edited three books. She met and married a farmer and moved to the bush in 1996, the year that Pauline Hanson first entered parliament. She heard those conversations, lived the main street political debate in a small town west of Canberra, while reporting on Hanson’s first speech from the federal press gallery.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780143789284
ISBN-10: 0143789287
Publisher: Penguin Random House Australia
Publication Date: January 1st, 2019
Pages: 336
Language: English