Published 11 October 2017
On Friday 20th October, SEI Co-Director, Professor Iain McCalman will launch Dr Anna Clark’s latest book, The Catch: The Story of Fishing in Australia. Join McCalman and Clark at Gleebooks’ Glebe branch, for the launch.
The Catch explores the history of subsistence, recreational and commercial fishing practices in Australia and tells a story of Australia’s ‘love affair’ with fishing.
Clark weaves her personal passion for fishing in this celebration of Australia’s fishing history, and in doing so, Clark acknowledges the conflicting issues of fishing, including the tension between recreational fishing and the commercial fishing industry; recognition of fishing as a cultural right for Indigenous Australians; and the effects of modern day fishing practices on ocean ecosystems through overfishing.
Furthermore, Clark explains that whilst the joy and memories that some Australians associate with fishing cannot be measured, it is clear that “fish stocks can be. And, as long as we are compelled to fish, these questions will continue to be asked (p.140).”
In every coastal town in Australia, there’s a bait shop and a boat ramp, and, in garages around the country, fishing rods are strung up waiting for their next outing. Many of us have a special fishing spot, and families pass on tips from generation to generation and exchange fishy tales of amazing catches and near misses.
Bringing her personal passion for throwing in a line, author Anna Clark celebrates the enduring pleasure of fishing in “The Catch: The Story of Fishing in Australia”. This book charts the history of fishing, from the first known accounts of Indigenous fishing and early European encounters with Australia’s waters to the latest fishing fads; from the introduction of trout and fly fishing to the challenges of balancing needs of commercial and recreational fishers.
Anna Clark holds an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship at the Australian Centre for Public History at the University of Technology Sydney. She has written extensively on history education, historiography and historical consciousness, including: Teaching the Nation: Politics and Pedagogy in Australian History (2006), History’s Children: History Wars in the Classroom (2008), Private Lives, Public History (2016), the History Wars (2003) with Stuart Macintyre, as well as two history books for children, Convicted! and Explored!